Dentist: Parents should not overlook back to school visit

Published: Aug. 2, 2016 at 3:12 PM CDT
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Local dentists say sending your kids off with a healthy mouth is just as important as a booster shot.

“These are the teeth that you’re going to have for the rest of your life so you really need to take care of them,” said Jennie Bennett of College Station.

First grade teacher Jennie Bennett got her dental checkup Tuesday before heading back to school. She says it’s all a part of leading by example.

“We educate kids on teeth and that’s a big deal because they are losing their first teeth and getting their permanent teeth,” said Bennett.

Dr. Curt Kaiser says the weeks before a new school year are the perfect time to come in for a checkup.

“There is free time it doesn’t interrupt the school schedule and kids don’t have to miss information in class,” said Kaiser.

According to the American Dental Association, more than half of all children age’s five to nine have at least one cavity or filling. Something Dr. Kaiser believes can lead to difficulty in eating, speaking and concentrating in school. So he recommends a few tips:

“Brush at least twice a day spend about two minutes on your mouth, make sure your getting the cheek side, tongue side and the surface area of your teeth,” said Kaiser. “The second most important and most overlooked area is flossing.”

To protect your healthy smile, Dr. Kaiser says children and adults should look into dental sealants to protect your teeth from getting cavities.

“It depends on what your habits are, if you’re a hard candy chewer,” said Kaiser. “If you chew popcorn kernels or ice you could pop them off, they’re not bonded into the tooth they are just bonded on to the tooth. But it’s something that we check every time you come in for a checkup.”

Dr. Kaiser says if you’re an adult with sealants and your experiencing cavities it may be because you have cracks in your sealant or it may be an older material that doesn’t release fluoride to the tooth.