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Why should a mother remind an adolescent or teen child to brush?

Rita Medwid
Dentist

Mothers, fathers, grandparents, guardians and even babysitters need to remind kids to brush for good oral health. Good oral health leads to a healthy life. This is similar to reminding them to wash their hands before eating. You want them to be healthy, cut down on germs and live without pain or problems. Unfortunately, children, teens and some adults don't have health as a priority. They need motivation and positive reinforcement so good oral hygiene becomes a habit. Also, make sure they see you caring for your teeth. A family that brushes together, stays together. 

Remind your teen that by visiting the dentist and practicing good oral habits, he is practicing good overall health as well. Dental disease is almost entirely preventable, and left untreated, can lead to serious health problems such as infection, damage to bone or nerve, and tooth loss. Infection from tooth disease can even spread to other parts of the body and in rare cases, can lead to death.

In addition to regular dental checkups, brushing twice a day, flossing between teeth once a day, and eating a balanced diet and limiting between-meal snacks can help ensure a beautiful smile for a lifetime.
Mia Redrick
Healthcare
The goal of all parents is to teach kids healthy hygiene habits, and oral care is a major part of this. Many parents are paying for braces and other little "extras" inside their child's mouth, so they want their kids to understand how to care for their teeth. Also teaching good oral hygiene is a lesson that will last a lifetime because it is an important part of having healthy habits and teaching our kids to take care of themselves. During the teen and adolescent years, hygiene becomes even more important because our children's peers become more aware of what they look like and smell like.  Good oral hygiene can help limit some teen insecurities in this area.

 The risk for periodontal disease goes up simply because adolescents, or pre-teens, become lazy about practicing good oral self-care. Other reasons for an increased risk are:  hormonal changes which increase the risk for periodontal disease This can cause increased sensitivity of the gums and teeth, especially in young women. Mothers need to remind  their growing children about good oral care. There are ways to remind without nagging. Helping your adolescent to stay organized and giving him or her the tools and resources for success not only contributes to good oral care, but it's good parenting too. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.