I have never been to a dentist.
You read that right. NEVER. That’s embarrassing to admit! That’s not to say that I won’t go. But when I was a little girl, my mom tried to take me one time. I screamed like a Banshee. The Dentist, who wasn’t very good with kids, yelled to get me out and never bring me back. And, she never did.
I’ve never had any problems with my teeth. They are fairly white, especially me being a tea drinker. I’ve always brushed at least twice a day. BUT, I never did floss like I should, until I got the Waterpik flosser. So I do have some buildup on the back of my teeth. And I’m pretty sure I have a cavity, even though it doesn’t bother me. I can see it. AND there is some gum disease that runs in my family. So I know I need to make an appointment. I also know that our children learn the most by watching and mimicking us, their parents. So I will be making dental appointments for me and for our children. Also, with Halloween coming up and ALL THAT CANDY, tooth care is super duper important. I do let my kids have candy for Halloween, in moderation. But along with watching their health and waistlines from all the sugar, we also need to watch their oral health!
Another thing we are doing for the next three (3) weeks is participating in the Listerine Smart Rinse #SweetSmart Oral Care Challenge. I attended a webinar regarding Oral Health care and learned some startling facts that I want to share with you.
As you can see in the photo above, the 6 of us are stocked with Reach toothbrushes, Listerine Smart Rinse for the kids (and mommy & daddy), Listerine UltraClean for mommy and daddy, Reach dental floss and a calendar with wipe off markers.
We’ll use the Smart Rinse, floss etc. for three weeks and see how our teeth improve. I’ll have another post at the end of our challenge but I want to give you some very valuable info regarding oral care, stats and the challenge.
Did you know that brushing alone misses 75% of your mouth?
I had no idea! Brushing, flossing, and rinsing with a mouthrinse like LISTERINE SMART RINSE is an essential combination for maintaining a healthy mouth and protecting your child’s teeth against cavities. LISTERINE SMART RINSE is especially designed for kids, provides 12-hour cavity protection, and strengthens teeth 99 percent than brushing alone.* (see below)
Did you also know you are supposed to brush your teeth for at least 2 minutes? 2 MINUTES! I have a heck of a time getting my 6 year old to even brush her teeth, period, let alone for 2 minutes. She is going through a stage that many kids go through where she just doesn’t brush. I even get my kids toothbrushes ready for them in the mornings and evenings. But I have to keep a constant watch to make sure she uses it. Me, that’s the first thing I do when I get up in the morning. I can’t stand that early morning taste/breath. YUCK! Gotta brush it all away.
So, to reiterate that: On average, brushing should last two minutes and rinsing 60 seconds – which is about the length of a song. For all purchases of LISTERINE SMART RINSE at Walmart, you can download a song that your kids can brush/rinse to. Find songs at www.disney.com/phineasandferbmusic or www.barbie.com/listerinekids.
A few stats from FERN INGBER, Founding President and CEO of America’s ToothFairy:
- Tooth decay is the #1 chronic childhood disease
- 44 percent of American kids will suffer from pediatric dental disease before they reach kindergarten
- Of the 4 million kids born each year, more than half will have cavities by the time they reach 2nd grade
- 43% of Americans lack dental insurance
- All in all, 16 million kids suffer from untreated dental disease
In 2011 alone, over 50,000 kids received critical oral health services (screenings, fluoride treatments, cleanings, sealants, restorative services) thanks to Johnson & Johnson’s contributions to America’s ToothFairy.
America’s ToothFairy has reached more than 1 million kids, but the need continues to be great, and parents need to be educated. For example, many people don’t know that if a child’s pacifier falls on the floor and a parent rinses it in their own mouth, if that parent has periodontal disease, they’re transferring that disease to their child.
One way to get involved this season: Join Trick or Treat for America’s ToothFairy. Just set up a virtual page for Halloween, invite friends and family to join you, and take on the opportunity to help raise money to care for a child in need.
You can learn more at AmericasToothFairy.org.
Flouride. We’ve all heard the warnings that it is dangerous. BUT I learned from DR. KANETA LOTT, pediatric dentist that flouride is only considered dangerous when it is consumed/swallowed in large amounts. Think fluoridated water. In rinses and toothpastes, you aren’t swallowing it. You spit and rinse it out. So it is safer and it is needed for good oral health.
Dr. Lott also did a Q&A with those of us on the call. I tried to decide on a few to share with you to save space in this pot, but honestly, they were all really good! So I created a downloadable pdf that you can view instead. That way, I can cover it all. I really hope you’ll download it and check it out. It has some fantastic questions!
Ok, that is a lot of info for you all. I will cover some more in my next post. But I really wanted to get this info out there. I think many of us don’t give as much thought to dental care as we should. As long as we don’t feel like there is a problem, we tend to just keep doing the same routine. In my family, that routine is pretty good but still needs a boost. So I am definitely looking forward to this challenge!
For more information on helping kids with their oral care routine, you can visit www.ListerineKids.com (THERE IS A PRINTABLE COUPON), and you can shop for LISTERINE SMART RINSE and other oral care products at Walmart or www.walmart.com.
Check out this PSA featuring Larry the Cable Guy and Brady Reiter, stars of the Tooth Fairy 2 movie, with a special message about the America’s ToothFairy Kids Club!
*Based on a laboratory study. Data on file.
Disclosure: I received products from Johnson & Johnson Healthcare Products Division of McNEIL-PPC, Inc. and The Motherhood as part of my participation in the LISTERINE® SMART RINSE® Sweet Smart Challenge. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this post are my own.