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September is National Gum Care Awareness Month

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Gum health is important for everyone, but especially your children.

“Healthy gums help keep teeth in place and protect them from decay,” said Dr. Lela Farmer, lead dentist at Scuba Smile for Kids in North Central San Antonio. “September is National Gum Care Awareness Month and with your children now back in school, it is a great time of the year to be sure your child has healthy gums.”

What are gums?

Gums are the pink soft tissue that surround and support your child’s teeth. They also help to keep food particles and bacteria out of the mouth.

Gum disease can surface at any age, and your child might not even know it. Gum disease can cause bad breath, and even worse, lead to tooth loss or other health problems. That’s why it is so important to learn more about gum disease and understand what to look for as your child gets older.

4 Signs There May Be A Problem. 

Take the time to not only look at your child’s teeth but also take a peek at their gums. If you see any of the following signs, they may be dealing with gum disease.

Watch for red or swollen gums.

Do your child’s gums bleed every time they brush?

Look for gums that pull away from your child’s teeth.

Persistent bad breath.

Loose teeth that should not be loose.

Here are 3 Tips to help keep your child’s gums healthy.

Brush Away

Teach your child to brush their teeth with a proper-size toothbrush and to use fluoride toothpaste twice a day. This habit should help prevent a build-up of plaque and tartar, which if left unchecked, could get under their gums and cause inflammation and gum disease.

Don’t Forget the Floss

When your child brushes, be sure to add flossing into the mix! Children need to get in the habit of flossing every time they brush.

“When you reinforce flossing early in a child’s life, you can help to ensure they will floss as adults,” said Dr. Farmer.

Flossing is essential to remove plaque and debris from between the teeth and helps to keep gums healthy.

Make it fun

Here are a few things you can do to make brushing and flossing fun for your child.

Allow them to pick their own colorful toothbrush that’s appropriate for their age. If they are choosing the brush, they will be more likely to want to brush and floss their teeth with a smile. You can also select their favorite song to listen to while brushing. Pick one that’s at least two minutes in length to ensure they’re brushing long enough to get their teeth clean.

Be sure to schedule a dental cleaning and check-up for your child at least twice a year. Your child’s dentist can often see things you may have overlooked.

At Scuba Smiles we are committed to helping you and your children develop healthy oral habits. Whether its regular cleanings, fluoride treatments, or sealants, we work hard to help your child have a stress-free dental visit. When you help your child take care of their gums and teeth, it is a perfect formula for healthy smiles for years to come!