10 Simple Ways to Prevent Cavities in Kids

It is shocking to see your kids have cavities. Especially when you brush their teeth, how did this happen? Do not blame yourself. Cavities in children are quite common and can be caused by various germs that can spread quickly within a family.


To stop cavities, we must first understand how and why they happen. 

What causes cavities?


Cavities start when bacteria damage your teeth. These tiny creatures live in your mouth and feed on your food and drink. They stick together and make a sticky film called plaque. If you do not brush well or often, plaque grows and hardens. Then bacteria make acids that eat your tooth enamel, the hard layer that protects your teeth. When these acids create a hole in your enamel, it results in a cavity. Without treatment, this cavity can expand and deepen.

Cavities can pose a significant challenge for your child, but there’s no need for concern. We have prepared a list of ten tips that you can follow to prevent them.

  • Make water your child’s best friend.


Water is refreshing and cleansing. It helps flush away the bits of food that can stick to your child’s teeth. It also keeps their mouth moist and balanced, which is good for their enamel. On the other hand, sugary drinks are bad news. They can cause cavities and tooth decay. Even juices are not so innocent. They have a lot of sugar, and some are very acidic too. That’s like giving a feast to the harmful bacteria in your child’s mouth. So stick to water and keep your child’s smile bright.

  • Let them try an electric toothbrush when they are 3 or 4.


Electric toothbrushes are great for cleaning kids’ teeth. They can remove food and plaque better than regular toothbrushes. For example, the Oral-B can spin rapidly, from 7600 to 8800 times per minute! No kid can brush that fast! And electric toothbrushes are fun to use, so kids will want to brush more often.

  • Avoid frequent snacking and stick to meal times. 


Avoid frequent snacking and stick to meal times. Every snack your child has is also a snack for bacteria. Increased snacking can lead to more cavities. Therefore, it’s advisable to limit your child’s eating frequency. If your child requires a snack between meals, ensure it’s a healthy choice. Also, remember to encourage your child to drink plenty of water after snacking.

  • Talk to your dentist about sealants.


Molars, the teeth with deep grooves, can be challenging to clean and brush. Your dentist can put sealants on your child’s teeth to protect them from cavities until their teeth are fully grown.

  • Start brushing as soon as your child has their first tooth.


Brushing early is a beneficial habit to form. For babies and infants, you can use a washcloth or a teething toothbrush that they will like. At this age, you don’t need fluoride. Use toothpaste made for little ones without fluoride. They will enjoy the flavor and may want to eat the paste or suck on the brush. For children 3 to 6 years old and those who can spit out toothpaste, using a small amount of fluoride toothpaste is good.

  • Brush their teeth for them until they can write their name well.


 Brush their teeth for them until they can write their name well. Brushing your teeth is not easy. You need to hold the brush correctly and press it gently. You also need to brush all your teeth, on every side, for two minutes! Most kids can’t do this alone until they are 7-8 years. An effective method to check is to see how well your child can write their name with a pencil.

  • Snack smart with non-starchy, non-sticky foods. 


Snack smart with non-starchy, non-sticky foods. Sugar is not the only culprit for cavities; starchy snacks are also bad for your child’s teeth. Think of those little crackers and pretzels that look so innocent. They become a sticky and gummy mess on your child’s teeth. And that mess is a feast for the bacteria. The same goes for any sticky snack, like gummy bears and raisins. They cling to your child’s teeth and keep feeding the bacteria. Avoid them, especially when your child can’t brush their teeth for a while.

  • Don’t share food or pacifiers with your child.


Don’t share food or pacifiers with your child. Your mouth and your child’s mouth have different kinds of bacteria. Some of these bacteria can cause cavities, and they can move from one mouth to another. That means you can pass on cavities to your child if you share their spoon. Pacifiers can also carry bacteria from your mouth to your child’s mouth. So, if you have ever had cavities, avoid putting a pacifier in your mouth to clean them. Brush and floss your teeth regularly to avoid giving your child anything but your love!

  • Show kids how to floss with a floss stick. 


A floss stick is a good tool for little ones to floss their teeth. They need to slide the string of the floss stick between two teeth. They should rub the floss softly on the teeth. They should have an adult watch them first and be careful not to hurt their gums.

  • Visit your dentist every six months for a professional cleaning and check-up.


This tip is crucial! Professional cleanings can get rid of tartar. Your dentist can also use fluoride treatments to make your child’s teeth stronger as they grow. The stronger your child’s teeth are, the harder it is for bacteria to make holes in them. And your dentist can find and fix any cavities early. This way, your child won’t have any pain, and you won’t have to pay exorbitantly for dental work later.

These 10 simple ways to prevent cavities in kids are easy to implement and effective in protecting your children’s teeth. So be sure to learn more about Pediatric Dentistry to provide better oral health for your young loved ones. 


To learn more about cleaning your teeth and other dental treatments available, we welcome you to book an appointment with Alsafwa Medical Center. We provide a comprehensive choice of general dentistry treatments to restore and maintain good oral health.

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