March marks the beginning of spring. As the days get longer and warm days return, an almost compulsive desire to clean comes with it. In celebration of spring - and spring cleaning, the Tooth Fairy wants to share one easy clean to check off your list! A nice squeaky-clean mouth!
- Keeping your teeth clean – A regular brushing schedule and a healthy diet are the best ways to keep teeth clean. To ensure your teeth are strong, remember to brush for at least two minutes twice a day. That’s like singing the ABC’s four times. A diet with low amounts of sugar, consistent calcium intake, and lots of water will ensure that your teeth are healthy for years to come. In addition to brushing your teeth, be sure to floss at least once a day. Flossing helps get all the leftover bacteria out of the hard-to-reach places a toothbrush can’t. Brushing without flossing is like stepping in the shower without cleaning under your arms, between your toes, or behind your ears. It just doesn’t get the whole job done!
- Cleaning your tongue – We spend so much time focusing on our teeth that sometimes we forget that other parts of our mouth play a role in good oral health. When brushing teeth, it’s important to remember to give your tongue a clean too. Think of a tongue like a sponge full of bacteria. While it may not develop cavities, your tongue can hold and spread cavity-causing bacteria to your teeth. The best way to keep your tongue clean is to incorporate it into your brushing routine. Each time you brush your teeth you should brush your tongue with either your toothbrush or special tongue scraper.
- Caring for your gums – Just as it’s important to clean your teeth and tongue, it’s important to clean and care for your gums too. Your gums are one of the first lines of defense to keeping your body healthy. Brushing and flossing on a regular schedule will help your gums stay healthy along with your teeth and tongue.
- Keeping your tools clean – Along with good oral hygiene comes good toothbrush hygiene. Even though you can’t see it, there can be thousands of bacteria are all over your toothbrush. If you don’t keep your toothbrush clean, that bacteria can end up back in your mouth! The best way to store your toothbrush is in the open air where it can dry out between uses. This helps rid any harmful bacteria that thrive in damp environments. Replacing your toothbrush frequently is important too. A toothbrush should be replaced every three to four months!
So, make sure you and your kiddos are taking part in spring cleaning by taking care of your teeth and tongue by brushing for two minutes twice daily, flossing once a day, and visiting the dentist regularly. Ask your dentist for an extra toothbrush after each visit so you can always have an extra one ready to go when yours needs replacing.
Looking for more fun activities to keep your child on top of their oral health? Check out our Parents Resources page for activities sheets, books, and more!