8 Tooth-Friendly Tips and Activities for the Whole Family
Prevention & Treatment These fun activities can engage your entire family in good oral health practices and help to maintain healthy smiles for a lifetime.
1. Flossing can be fun
Have each family member fold a regular piece of white paper, accordion style. Cut out the shape of a tooth, then unfold. Now you have a fun way to demonstrate and allow your child to practice flossing techniques.
2. Sing a song
Children love music, and a good tune can be catchy for adults and teens too! For fun songs and chants that will help your child remember good oral health practices, visit AmericasToothFairyKids.org.
3. Join the club
Families can sign up for the America's ToothFairyKids Club! Members of this free club receive personalized letters from the ToothFairy and quarterly newsletters with fun, educational activities that promote healthy behaviors for the entire family!
4. Dentist for a Day
Make a separate appointment to tour the dentist office prior to a child's visit. Give your child a special nametag that designates them as the "Dentist for a Day" or "Dentist's Helper". This special tour can help eliminate the fear of going to the dentist by allowing the child to meet the staff or the dentist. This also creates a learning opportunity for the child as the staff can show them a few of their instruments, demonstrate how they will be used and help your child understand why it is important to practice good oral health behaviors. In addition to reinforcing concepts such as daily brushing and flossing, this "Dentist for a Day" visit will help get your child excited about their next dental visit.
5. Experiment with oral health
Boil an egg and leave in cola overnight. The next day, have your child brush the stains from the egg with a toothbrush and toothpaste. This experiment provides an opportunity to promote healthy food choices, demonstrate tooth brushing techniques and the importance of daily brushing.
6. Meet oral health care goals
Have your child create a calendar to track good oral health practices. Post the calendar in the bathroom and reward children with a gold star or happy face for each day of great oral care!
7. Tooth tips for teens
Teens can learn the importance of oral health through community service as Students United for America's ToothFairy! As mentors to young children, teens can help teach them how to maintain a healthy smile while reinforcing their own good oral health habits!
8. More tips for the entire family from America’s ToothFairy
Eat healthy foods such as fruit, vegetables, cheese and yogurt.
Avoid starchy or sticky snacks. Foods that stick to the teeth create an environment for bacteria to thrive and grow.
Limit foods containing sugar to mealtimes only.
Check out products with xylitol as an alternative to sugar-laden sweets!
Drink lots of water and avoid sodas and energy drinks that are high in sugar.
Wear a mouth guard while playing sports to avoid injuries and dental trauma.
Invest in a new toothbrush every three months and after every illness to avoid lingering bacteria and germs.
Preventive dental visits are important to maintaining good oral health. Visit the dentist every six months. Regular checkups and cleanings are essential for a healthy smile.
And of course, brush and floss your teeth twice a day! If instructed by your dentist, introduce a fluoride rinse to offer extra protection for children ages six or older.