How To Keep Your Teen’s Smile Healthy

Posted Nov 29th, 2018 in Health & Nutrition, General Information, Pediatric Dentistry

How To Keep Your Teen’s Smile Healthy

Keeping their teeth and gums healthy as the grow into young adulthood should come naturally for teens who established good oral hygiene routines as children. That said, here are some tips from our Langley dentists on how to keep teens' smiles healthy.

The basics of good oral health for teens are much the same as those for adults:

Plaque is the main cause of cavities and gum disease. It's important to brush two times a day with fluoride toothpaste and a soft toothbrush to remove plaque. 

If plaque is not removed every day, it can harden into tartar. Floss at least once a day to remove plaque from between your teeth and under the gum line. 

Limit foods that are high in sugar or starches, especially sticky foods, as these tend to linger on the surface of the teeth for longer.

Visit the dentist for professional cleanings and checkups at least every six months.

In addition to these basics, the following are a few dental health issues that tend to affect teens specifically:

Orthodontics

The early teen years are when many young people undergo orthodontic treatment. Speak to your dentist about the alignment of your teen’s teeth, and whether orthodontic treatment is something to be considered.

Nutrition

As they become more independent, teens begin making more and more of their own food choices, and they may not always make the best ones for their oral health or their overall health.

Make sure that your teen has the tools they need to make better choices. Be sure they understand how their dietary choices affect all aspects of their health.

Smoking

Unfortunately, many people start smoking in their teens. Smoking comes with a myriad of general health risks. Risks from smoking include the increased risk of oral cancers, gum disease and even cavities.

In addition, smoking causes bad breath and tooth discolouration. Speak with your teen about all of the reasons that smoking is a bad idea, and how important it is to avoid even trying it.

Oral Piercings

Oral piercings are popular among teens, however they can cause a lot of oral health problems, including chipped teeth and infections. For more information on why we advise against oral piercings, click here.

Need help talking to your teen about oral health? Contact our Langley children's dentists today to book a consultation.

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