You want the best for your children, as all mothers and fathers do. But did you know that your own oral hygiene habits could affect your children’s long-term oral health? According to Dr. Kramer at David M. Kramer DDS, one of the top general dentists in the Fairport, NY, area, this decrease in oral health was shown in a long-term study published in the Journal of Dental Research. Below, he explains how the phenomenon occurs.
Nature vs. Nurture
The study found that, when compared to mothers with good oral health, those with severe oral health problems were far more likely to have children who grew up to have similar issues. From tooth decay and loss to gum disease, the worse the mother’s oral health, the worse her children’s were likely to be.
The reason behind it involves both genetic and environmental factors, otherwise known as “nature and nurture.” Not only can mothers pass genetic predispositions for poor oral health to their children, but they’ll also pass on their practices—whatever the parent teaches and reinforces will become a habit for the child, as well.
Low-income mothers with less access to health care may not be able to afford fillings, gum disease treatments, or other potential oral health necessities. Since children in low-income families often grow up to be in some degree of poverty themselves, the problem can become a multi-generational cycle.
To avoid issues, teach your child to brush their teeth twice a day and floss before bedtime. If you can, get dental sealants for your little one, as these will help protect them from experiencing tooth decay. Schedule an appointment for both you and your kid to see a general dentist every six months for cleanings, and minimize or eliminate sweets and sugary drinks for both of your diets.
If you or your child missed your last dental appointment, call David M Kramer DDS at (585) 223-1980. Known for over two and a half decades as the most caring, personalized dental practice in Fairport, they have you covered, whether you need a root canal or are just looking to beautify your smile with cosmetic dentistry. To learn more about the services provided by this general dentist, visit their website.