Mon. Jul 15th, 2024

Dental health ensures overall wellness. Ask any dentist in Dearborn, and they won’t deny it. After all, everything we eat and drink to energize our bodies enters our bodies through our mouths. Having said that, children are the ones who need the extreme attention of their parents to maintain oral hygiene.

Parents can lay the groundwork for a lifetime of bright, healthy smiles by instilling excellent habits in their children at a young age. However, a few unintentional unhealthy habits can significantly influence dental health, particularly in children who are still forming their oral hygiene regimens. 

Here are the five worst habits for children’s dental health summarized in the article. As a parent, make sure your child does not develop these habits early or at all.  

1. Nail Biting And Tooth Grinding 

This one may be the biggest challenge for many parents. If you discover your child gnawing on their nails, it impacts more than simply the appearance of their nails. Keratin is used to harden the nails and toes. When your child chews and bites their nails, they force their teeth to bite through a hardened material, which causes unnecessary wear and tear on their enamel. It can cause chips and fissures in their teeth over time. They also increase tooth movement by chewing their nails, which can develop into gaps and malocclusions. 

Here’s how you can discourage your kid from biting nails: 

First and foremost, parents must determine what is causing their child’s nail-biting behaviour. Many children experience tension, anxiety, or boredom. Once you’ve identified the cause of the behaviour, you can teach them breathing techniques and exercises or give them a stress ball or fidget toy. If these measures do not work for your child, consult their pediatrician for further advice. 

Teeth grinding,  also known as bruxism, is another bad oral habit, like nail biting. It affects three out of every ten youngsters and worsens with poor dental hygiene. Teeth grinding is more common during deep sleep or stressful situations. 

Popular therapies like easy stress-reduction techniques or wearing a mouthguard at bedtime may help avoid teeth grinding. Making your child open up about their feelings is an easy way to relieve tension. 

It will alleviate their symptoms and safeguard them from additional harm. Bruxism can cause premature tooth wear and pain in the jaw or teeth, making the youngster feel uneasy when speaking, eating, or smiling. 

2. Thumb Sucking

To comfort themselves, babies suck their thumbs. However, help your child break the habit before their permanent teeth appear. Thumb sucking can cause an overbite or interfere with natural tooth alignment, leading to chewing and speech difficulties. 

It could lead to expensive orthodontic dental work for your child. It is the same as allowing your child to use a pacifier for an extended period. When your child reaches the age of one, you should stop providing them with a pacifier.

If you can’t help your kid refrain from thumb-sucking, visit pediatric dentistry in Dearborn to let an expert take it further.

3. Chewing Pencils, Pens, And Ice

Some children automatically gnaw on their pencils or pens when concentrating or studying, while others enjoy chewing on ice after finishing their beverages. However, chewing on items other than food might harm their teeth. 

Chewing on a pencil end can introduce bacteria into the mouth. Meanwhile, biting ice can shatter or break their teeth or erode their enamel, causing tooth pain in children. 

4. Over Sugar Intake 

Kids adore sweets and consume them regularly. Sucking hard sweets and biting on sticky sweet delicacies like gummy bears can lead to tooth decay. Bacteria may eat sugar in their mouths. These bacteria can create acids that erode tooth enamel. Although it may be difficult for youngsters to resist sweet snacks all the time, make sure they brush their teeth soon after eating them. 

Aside from sweets, kids enjoy consuming fruit juices and sodas. These beverages, however, are not only heavy in sugar but also acidic. Regularly drinking fruit juices and soda can erode the enamel, depriving the teeth of their natural protection. When drinking hot or cold beverages, eroded enamel and dentin might produce sensitive teeth.

If you feel your kid’s sugar intake is too much, visit a pediatric dentistry near you to help them with their dental and overall health at the earliest possible time. 

5. Improper Brushing And Flossing 

Parents want their children to enjoy brushing and flossing their teeth. However, children brush their teeth more vigorously without sufficient direction, causing gum and tooth damage. If you do not teach your children how to brush and floss their teeth properly and avoid tooth decay, they will develop negative dental habits as they grow older.

Whether your child’s toothbrush is electronic or manual, teach them how to brush their teeth. If you brush  your child’s teeth, use a toothbrush with soft bristles to deliver a gentle experience. Brushing your child’s teeth vigorously, for example, might wear down their gums and induce a recession. Instead, show them how to wash their teeth gently in circular motions with a soft toothbrush.


Parents should be good role models for their children, especially in oral care. Breaking bad habits can be difficult, but showing good, healthy behaviour to your kids can encourage them to improve.

Nagging and forcing your children to stop their bad oral habits would leave a negative and dominant impression of you as a parent. Instead, gently educate children on the consequences of their practices and how they can harm their teeth. Remember that being instructional rather than judgmental can work wonders for many children. 

Is Your child Still Skipping Dental Visits?

At Oakman Family Dentistry, our dentists understand that dealing with kids is tricky. However, our experts make sure your kids don’t get scared of going through dental treatments. Instead, they learn the importance of and enjoy having their mouths taken care of. 

We are the end to your search for a dentist near you. Schedule an appointment today with us and trust us to take care of your children’s overall oral health.

By nitin

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