“I need a vacation,” said no dental routine ever.
But you and your family do need a break. Fortunately, school is out for summer! From family road trips to sports and sleepovers, kids have the freedom to enjoy a much-needed vacation.
Remember – summer is a break, not a free-for-all. While it’s fine to get into a less rigid routine when school’s out, it’s important keep some systems in place. Help your family enjoy summer without sacrificing their smiles:
1). Keep it consistent.
While they may try to convince you otherwise, kids do better with a routine. It’s fine to bend bedtime rules once in a while (it’s summer after all). Just make sure you and your little ones are getting the recommended amount of shut-eye each night. Remember that, while you and your older children may only need 8 hours of sleep per night, children under the age of 13 need more. Sleep is crucial to your mood, body and smile.
Hold on to healthy habits like brushing and flossing. Just like summer reading, dental neglect can stack up. Let kids pick their favorite summer activities, not whether or not they brush their teeth. All it takes is 2 minutes, 2 times a day.
2). Begin with a brush.
One of the best parts about summer is sleeping-in sans snooze button. Unsurprisingly, teens sleep more during the summer than they do during the school year. As soon as you wake up from your extended summer slumber, book it to the bathroom and put the pedal to the paste. Here’s why:
While you sleep, your mouth produces less saliva and dries out. That decrease in spit equals an increase in bacteria. So, when you wake, take 2 minutes to brush your teeth and tongue to get rid of the influx of nighttime bacteria.
3). Make sweet swaps.
Snow cones, ice cream and popsicles are just a few beloved summer delights. While we invite icy indulgences on occasion, sugary treats can be harsh to your teeth. Instead of shunning sweets all summer, why not give your favorites a makeover?
This summer, let your worries go…not your dental routine. Enjoy your vacation!