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Good oral hygiene is an important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Parents and caregivers of young children need to make sure that they are teaching the right habits in order to make dental care a part of everyday life. The following article is a quick guide for those who want to know more about helping their kids maintain a clean set of teeth.

When approaching dental care for young children, people should think about:

Introducing key elements early – According to Ohio State University's Wexner Medical Center, the first year of a person's life is a critical time for developing good dental care habits. For example, the organization advocates introducing children to toothbrushes before they reach 12 months of age. As their kids get older, parents should slowly introduce the use of mouthwash and fluoridated toothpaste.

Sticking to a healthy diet – As the old saying goes, "we are what we eat." In the age of cheap soda, snacks and candy, parents need to be more vigilant than ever about regulating the meals their children eat. Research has linked sugary and carbonated treats to an increase in cavities, which can impact a young child's education, social well-being and overall health.

Visiting the dentist regularly – While oral care should begin immediately under close supervision by a doctor, a child should go see a licensed pediatric family dentist for an initial examination within the first year. Like in adult dental care, children should receive cleanings and checkups every six months.

Taking steps to improve oral hygiene, like brushing regularly and keeping up with dental appointments, is one of the most important things parents can do for their kids. For information about caring for child and adolescent teeth, contact a local dentist today to learn more.

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