Helping your child develop healthy habits is one of the best gifts you can give as a parent. This includes instilling in your kids the importance of a strong oral hygiene routine. Just like eating vegetables or cleaning their room, kids aren’t always enthused about brushing and flossing. Dr. Justin DeGarmo of Elizabethtown Dentistry shares three ways to get your child excited about self-care.
3 Ways to Make Brushing & Flossing Fun
- Let Them Choose Their Supplies
Kids like to be a part of the decision-making process, whether it’s picking a book at the library or choosing their own toothbrush and toothpaste. Kids’ dental product manufacturers know children may need extra incentive to get excited about brushing, so you can easily find items with bright colors, cartoon and movie characters, and fun flavors specifically for little ones. When selecting a toothpaste, be sure to pick a mild, non-minty flavor, such as strawberry or bubblegum, as kids tend to prefer these.
- Make It a Game
It’s no secret kids love to play. By making their oral hygiene routine into a game, they may even look forward to it. Consider setting a timer and having them brush until it’s done, cheering them on as they go. Or, better yet, play a three-minute song they like and have them dance along as they brush. You can find several teeth-brushing songs for kids on YouTube for this purpose. There are also smartphone apps for kids, with timers and music to make brushing more enjoyable.
- Reward Good Habits
Positive reinforcement can work wonders for kids. Dr. Justin DeGarmo recommends designing a weekly tooth-brushing chart. Each day your little one completes their oral healthcare routine, put a sticker on the chart. At the end of the week, let them choose a fun activity to do as a reward for their good work. This might be a bike ride with the family or picnic in the park, or a movie night with their favorite film. Just go easy on the candy!
More on Dr. Justin DeGarmo
Dr. Justin DeGarmo received a B.S. in Health Sciences at Clemson University and a D.M.D. degree at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, SC. Following dental school, Dr. Justin DeGarmo completed a one-year residency in St. Petersburg, FL and earned certification for Advanced Education in General Dentistry through the University of Florida. During his residency, Dr. Justin DeGarmo trained at the Dawson Academy and earned his Fellowship from the International Congress of Oral Implantologists.
Dr. Justin DeGarmo is a member of the American Dental Association, the Academy of General Dentistry, the Christian Medical and Dental Association, and the North Carolina Dental Association. Justin DeGarmo is a founding member of the Southeastern Prosthodontic Study Club.
Dr. Justin DeGarmo is a General Dentist at Elizabethtown Family Dentistry, in North Carolina.
As a student, Dr. Justin DeGarmo studied and trained diligently to become the practitioner he is today. His objective now, as during his education, is to be able to provide the community with exceptional dental care suited to each patient’s individual needs.
Dr. Justin DeGarmo earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Health Sciences at Clemson University. Dr. DeGarmo was a driven learner and the top graduate in his major.
After graduation, Dr. DeGarmo went on to receive his D.M.D. degree at the Medical University of South Carolina.
Dr. DeGarmo’s commitment to dentistry remained his focus throughout his years of schooling. As a result of his hard work, Justin DeGarmo received an award for excellence in Prosthodontics from the Southeastern Academy of Prosthodontics.
Following dental school, Dr. Justin DeGarmo completed a one-year residency in St. Petersburg, FL. He obtained a certificate for Advanced Education in General Dentistry through the University of Florida.
During his residency, Dr. Justin DeGarmo received training at the Dawson Academy. He also completed extensive continuing education in dental implants and was recognized as a Fellow by the International Congress of Oral Implantologists.
Dr. Justin DeGarmo pursued higher education for more than accolades, and he is committed to educating others about the importance of oral health.
Dr. Justin DeGarmo shares his experience to help patients make knowledgeable decisions when it comes to their teeth.
As an experienced doctor who knows the field, he wants to address a question he is frequently asked,
“What are the pros and cons of teeth implants versus bridges?”
Implants are a good option for tooth loss due to an injury or disease. A dental implant is a titanium post that acts as similarly to a tooth root to supports a crown.
The implant is surgically placed into the jawbone; it will then heal and ultimately integrate into the jawbone in that position. This fusing process usually takes three to six months. Once complete, an abutment is joined to the implant post. The abutment protrudes above the gum line to support the dental crown.
For purposes of this discussion, bridges are used to “bridge” the gap between one or more missing teeth. The surrounding natural teeth support the bridge. Bridges are made up of two or more crowns for the teeth on each part of the gap.
Dental Implants Vs. Bridges: Pros and Cons
What is the risk of dental disease?
Dental Implants: One reason dental implants often have a better long-term prognosis is because they cannot get cavities; they can develop gum disease so professional preventative treatment is still important with implants.
Dental Bridges: Good oral hygiene is necessary to make sure that no decay develops on the natural teeth supporting bridges. Similarly, gum disease will need to be monitored professionally.
What are the long-term dental health effects?
Dental Implants: Little to no bone or gum loss.
Dental Bridges: Some bone or gum loss in the region of the missing tooth.
How to take care of them?
Dental Implants: Brush and floss like normal.
Dental Bridges: Requires a special floss and different technique to properly clean.
Does it require surgery?
Dental Implants: Yes
Dental Bridges: No
What is the cost?
Dental Implants: A single tooth replacement with an implant can cost upwards of $5,000 due to surgery and elevated lab fees.
Dental Bridges: A three unit bridge (to replace one missing tooth) typically cost around $3,500.
However, these restorations may have to be replaced more often than implant restorations because of issues with the supporting natural teeth.
(Note: The costs associated with implants and bridges will vary due to the type of procedure chosen for both and the average costs can vary greatly depending on the the area that you live)
How long is the procedure and healing time?
Dental Implants: Multiple visits over 3 to 6 months.
Dental Bridges: 2 to 3 visits over a few weeks.
Dr. Justin DeGarmo recognizes that patients ultimately determine the pros and cons of dental treatment options based on their unique circumstances. Many factors can impact whether a patient is a good candidate for either a dental implant or bridge: it depends on the oral condition, expenses, and the aesthetic preferences of each patient. These are some general guidelines that should not substitute a professional dental exam taking individual factors into consideration.
Visit Elizabethtown Dentistry to further discuss dental options with Dr. Justin DeGarmo.
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