According to 1000 parents, children could eat up to five times as much sugar in summer! That’s a considerable increase, which many blamed on the extra ice creams, lollies, and sugary drinks they eat. Worryingly, the rise in sugar also coincides with a time when kids are less likely to look after their teeth. A fifth of parents believe their child’s oral care declines in the weeks off school, with the majority claiming it’s easier to forget to brush teeth when not in the usual routine. And 40 percent of parents fail to check whether their child has brushed their teeth.
Importance of Regular Check-Ups
This all means that summer is a necessary time to take kids for regular dental check-ups. After a long period of increased sugar intake, the summer holidays are one of the most critical times to book your children’s check-ups. Children’s appointments are free and, where appropriate, include a fluoride varnish treatment that can help protect against decay.
Consequences of Neglecting Oral Care
According to data published by Public Health England, every ten minutes, a child in England has a tooth removed in the hospital due to preventable decay. Tooth extraction also remains the most common reason for hospital admissions in 5 to 9-year-olds, and according to NHS data, only 58 percent of kids saw a dentist.
Tips for Maintaining Oral Health
Without the school routine, it’s easy for kids to lose their good oral hygiene and diet habits, perhaps brushing less and eating more sweet treats. This can be bad news for young teeth as even short periods of increased sugar intake can cause decay without a good brushing technique. Kids are entitled to free check-ups on the NHS and the holidays are the ideal time to take them. As well as checking their teeth, your dentist can provide a protective fluoride treatment, if necessary, plus tips on teeth-friendly snacks and brushing routines. You can begin taking your child for check-ups as soon as their first tooth appears or by age 1, whichever is sooner.