Stay healthy all year long by keeping germs out of your mouth! We invite you to talk to your child about the importance of hand washing for oral health and overall wellness.
Li’l Sunshine Smiles Dentistry is designed to ensure that your family gets the best care medicine and science can provide with a gentle and kind approach. Contact us today at (813) 576-0200 to make an appointment for a visit!
Let’s Talk About Germs
Germs are everywhere. They are in the air around us, in us, and on surfaces. Our hands come in contact with different surfaces and objects all throughout our day. That is why hand washing is so important for keeping germs and microbes out of our bodies.
How Should You Wash Your Hands
It isn’t enough to just wet our hands, or to just spread soap around quickly and rinse. No. To properly wash our hands and rid them of germs, it is necessary to lather them with soap and rub them around for at least 15-20 seconds. Then, rinse the soap suds away and dry your hands with a clean towel.
What About Hand Sanitizer?
The best way to rid your hands of dangerous germs is to wash with soap and water. But if these items are not available, hand sanitizer can help quickly reduce the amount of germs on your hands. It is important to note that hand sanitizer needs to contain at least 60 percent alcohol to be effective. Check the product label to ensure that your sanitizer will be effective. Also, hand sanitizers do not remove harmful chemicals like heavy metals or pesticides.
When using hand sanitizer, it is necessary to also rub your hands around for at least 20 seconds for the sanitizer to do its job. (Parents, make sure to supervise your children when they are using hand sanitizer. Alcohol poisoning can occur if your child swallows more than a couple mouthfuls. )
Tooth Decay and Germs
Tooth decay is damage to the surface of your tooth. It is a result from bacteria in your mouth attacking the enamel of your teeth. These attacks can lead to cavities in your teeth that, if not treated, can grow bigger and cause bigger problems.
Some oral bacteria is good and some is bad. The harmful bacteria combines with food to form sticky plaque. This plaque is what erodes your tooth enamel and leads to cavities. Plaque and tartar buildup can also irritate your gums and lead to gum disease.
Keeping your hands clean and not putting fingers in your mouth can help eliminate the amount and kinds of bacteria that enter your body.
Other Ways to Fight Germs and Tooth Decay
The Centers for Disease Control and Development advise the following tips to help prevent hygiene-related diseases:
- Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
- Floss between your teeth once a day.
- Strive for a balanced diet with nutrient-rich foods.
- Regularly visit your dentist for professional cleanings an exams.
Talk with Dr. Botero if you suspect that your child needs supplemental fluoride to strengthen teeth or if they have never received dental sealants. Both of these approaches can help safeguard the teeth from cavities and decay.
Keep Your Toothbrush Clean to Help Avoid Germs Entering Your Mouth
Something that many fail to remember is where they are putting their toothbrush when they aren’t brushing their teeth. Surfaces that you rest your bristles on may not be clean. Also, if you are using your toothbrush near a toilet, airborne particles from flushing can land on your toothbrush! Yuck!
After you brush your teeth, thoroughly rinse it and then allow it to dry in an upright position. (Try using a cup or a toothbrush stand for this purpose). Wash your hands BEFORE and AFTER toothbrushing or flossing to avoid bacteria entering your mouth. Don’t share toothbrushes with others. And finally, sterilize your toothbrush once a week by putting it in a few inces of water in a microwave-safe container and heating it for 2-3 seconds.
Call Today to Make An Appointment
Our Li’l Sunshine Smiles Dentistry offers our families and kids a well-trained staff with developed systems that allow patients and parents to move quickly through the treatment process with enjoyment and less fear!
Call 813-576-0200 to schedule a children’s dentistry consultation with Dr. Botero today and to receive more tips for oral care with kids!