From the time we brush that first little tooth to when we first teach our children to brush their teeth on their own, the main goal is to avoid decay. We know oral health is important, and we pass on that knowledge, hoping we can spare our child from ever having even a single cavity.
The importance of oral health just got bigger
Brushing, flossing and regular dental visits may be doing a lot more than protect your child’s baby and permanent teeth. Good oral care may also be good for their growth. According to a new study, tooth decay may negatively impact your child’s height and weight.
Healthy teeth, healthy growth
Researchers looked for a correlation between dental decay and height and weight in a study group of children aged 6-8. They measured the seriousness of each child’s oral health issues, including decay, missing and already filled teeth. The research showed that, compared to their peers with healthier teeth, the children with the worst oral health issues were shorter and weighed less.
Good oral health for its own sake
More studies will be necessary in order to prove that oral health can affect growth in children. But regardless of future research outcomes, children benefit from good oral health. Tooth decay has a negative impact on children for all the reasons we already know. If tooth decay has a negative impact on children’s growth, it’s simply one more vital reason to continue helping them to take good care of their teeth.
Fluoride continues to shine bright
Most parents would agree that they don’t need study results when it comes to their children’s oral health. But the American Dental Association (ADA) does have something they’d like parents to know about fluoride. A study has shown that it may be beneficial for children to be given fluoride as soon as that first tooth develops.
Cavities can show up earlier than we might think
About 25% of children develop tooth decay before the age of five, so make sure your child sees the dentist by his or her first birthday. Call for an appointment today: 847-223-5200.