23/05/2024

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Arkansas Department of Health & other experts share tooth care tips during Children’s Dental Health Awareness Month | KLRT

Arkansas Department of Health & other experts share tooth care tips during Children’s Dental Health Awareness Month | KLRT

NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark.- The Arkansas Department of Health and other experts are emphasizing multiple tips for parents caring for the dental needs of their kids.

ADH Office of Oral Health Director Dr. Rachel Sizemore expressed some essential habits for kids when it comes to their oral health.

“Brushing teeth and flossing daily at a young age can serve children for their whole lives,” Sizemore said. “Healthy teeth allow children to speak clearly, chew healthy foods and smile with confidence.”

She also noted that dental health education can be important to learn in school as well.

“Kids are used to learning important lessons in schools and libraries, making oral health education in those settings a natural fit,” Sizemore said.

Dr. Komal Mehra with Leap Kids Dental in North Little Rock said she hears many myths as new parents enter the office:

  • She said you shouldn’t bring your child to the dentist till they are two, instead, bring them when they get their first tooth.
  • She noted that even though juice has no added sugars, it can still be bad because anything with sugar coats a child’s teeth and should only be given as a treat once or twice a week.
  • Mehra said instead of brushing first thing in the morning, brush after breakfast and then brush and floss before bed.
  • She said baby teeth do matter as kids can keep them up to 12 years old. If they’re not taken care of, it can lead to mouth pain, which can cause infections.
  • She said it’s ok to start with fluoride toothpaste. Just start by smearing some on a toothbrush, and when they are spitting, use a pea-sized amount.

For more statistics on child oral health, visit Health.Arkansas.gov.