Oral Hygiene and your Teenager

Teenagers can be tough on their teeth. They don’t find time to brush. They also tend to eat a lot of junk food. Combine the two and you’ve got a situation ripe for tooth decay. Not surprisingly, many teenagers develop a lot of cavities.

Here are a few tips to help your child get through the teen years cavity-free:

  • Encourage your teenager to take good care of his or her teeth. This means brushing at least twice a day and flossing daily. Teenagers care a lot about how they look. Help your teen understand that bad oral hygiene can lead to stains, bad breath, missing teeth and many other dental problems.
  • Set a good example. If you take good care of your teeth, your teenager will see that good oral hygiene is important to you.
  • Have plenty of oral health-care supplies on hand. Keep soft toothbrushes, colored or flavored floss (or plastic flossers) and good-tasting toothpaste out in the bathroom. You can even keep them in the kitchen for quick use when teens are in a hurry.
  • Don’t buy junk food. Instead, keep lots of fruits and vegetables in the house for snacking.