When you bring your children to see our team at Smiles on 34th, we want to ensure their smiles are healthy. Good oral hygiene begins at home, with regular routines and proper brushing techniques.
As the holidays approach and your children consume more sweets than usual, it’s especially important to stay on top of your family’s oral hygiene. This year, instead of contributing to the number of treats they have, consider stuffing their stockings with gifts that will help keep their smiles bright.
Here are our top choices for holiday gifts for kids:
1. New toothbrushes & toothpaste
We usually recommend visits to the dentist every six months, but toothbrushes should be replaced every three months. The holidays are a great time to treat your child to a fresh toothbrush that will inspire them to brush their teeth at least twice daily.
Choose a soft-bristled brush with a colour or character theme that your child enjoys. Some toothbrushes light up or play music to encourage children to brush for an adequate amount of time. There is also an increasingly affordable selection of electric toothbrushes on the market.
Instead of traditional mint flavours, pop a new toothpaste into their stocking. Fruit or bubblegum options are popular with most kids, and there are even sparkly varieties available. Make sure to choose one with fluoride.
2. Travel supplies
If your family will be travelling over the holidays or you have a child who is frequently on the go, travel supplies are a great option. Compact travel toothbrushes make it easy to keep up with oral hygiene while away from home. Small tubes of toothpaste and disposable flossers are excellent to tuck into a small travel case or backpack as well.
3. Sugarless gum
If you want to treat your kids to something sweet, consider replacing candy with sugarless gum. Chewing sugarless gum increases saliva production, which reduces the acid that causes cavities. There are lots of flavours to choose from including bubblegum and fruit varieties that appeal to kids. Just make sure you never give gum to a baby or toddler who could choke on it.
4. Reusable straws
Reusable straws are becoming increasingly popular as we reduce our environmental impact. Straws prevent sugary drinks from touching your teeth and can help reduce cavities in kids.
Reusable options are durable and washable. It’s a good idea to purchase a special brush designed to thoroughly clean inside the straws. If you’re worried about chipping teeth on a hard stainless steel straw, try a plastic or bamboo variety instead.
5. Non-consumable treats
If you want to reduce sugary treats during the holidays, stuff your children’s stockings with non-consumable activities and toys. Some healthy ideas include craft supplies, activity books, cozy socks or mittens, crayons or markers for colouring, hair or beauty accessories, or small toy cars or dolls.
Lastly, don’t forget your pets!
While you’re out shopping for your children, don’t forget about your furry family members! Treat your pets to dental chew treats that double up as cleaners for their teeth. Choose chews that are clinically proven to break up plaque and promote good oral health. It’s recommended that you brush your pet’s teeth daily, so they may also benefit from a new toothbrush for the holidays.
The best gift of all: a cavity-free smile
The holidays are a great time to support your children’s dental health. Cavities cause tooth sensitivity and pain, which no one wants to experience, especially when there are celebrations to attend.
If your child is experiencing discomfort or you notice a visible hole or staining, book an appointment to see us as soon as possible. We offer a full range of pediatric dental services, including filling cavities, and will make sure your experience is as positive as possible.
You can also ask us about dental sealants if your child is particularly prone to cavities. These protective coatings are applied to the chewing surfaces of the back molars and premolars and can prevent plaque from damaging the teeth.
This year, make your holidays merry and bright by supporting healthy smiles for your children and your entire family!