Staying home? Going to summer camp? Remember to take care of your teeth!
The school year is winding down and summer plans are being finalized. Soon, kids will be hanging out at home, participating in summer sports or heading off to camp. Oral health is not the first thing on most kids’ minds. With lazy summer days at the pool, playing video games, snacking and playing with friends, oral health is probably not even on their radar. Good dental hygiene never takes a vacation so, regular brushing and flossing is as important in the summer as it is in any other season.
While summer break is a time to rest, relax and have adventures with family, the disruption in routine can cause some kids (and parents) to let their hygiene fall by the wayside. Keeping up with dental hygiene throughout the summer is important for maintaining good health throughout the year.
If your child is heading to sleep away camp, they will be wholly responsible for the care of their teeth. Most camps provide detailed lists of the clothing, equipment and personal items they want campers to bring, including oral care products.
Here are some tips to remember:
Make sure you pack your child a full oral care kit, including a toothbrush, toothpaste, floss and mouthwash.
Every parent who’s ever been to summer camp also knows that just because the toothbrush makes it to camp doesn’t mean your child will use it. To make compliance more likely, leave little reminders in their bag or write it in letters you send throughout their stay. It may be just the motivation they need to keep their teeth clean.
If your child wears braces, make sure to give your child a “braces camp kit.” The kit can include plenty of extra toothbrushes and wax in case a wire breaks. The important thing is for your child to maintain clean teeth while away. Make sure your child knows if anything were to happen to their braces, they need to inform the counselors so the camp can call us to see if an emergency appointment is necessary. The main thing is for your camper to be comfortable until they resume their regular dental schedule. Just like eating habits at home, the same instructions apply while away at camp: avoid sticky, chewy, or hard foods. Even though your camper may feel free to do what they want without Mom or Dad around to keep tabs on them, staying away from foods that can cause problems with their braces is in everyone’s best interest.
Remember to pack your mouth guard!
Stay safe & have fun!