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The Importance Of Good Oral Health For Your Child's Overall Health

The Importance Of Good Oral Health For Your Child's Overall Health

Oral health is often understood as separate from other aspects of health, but this is not the case. The body is a cohesive ecosystem where all aspects of health influence one another. This includes how oral health influences the body’s overall health and vice versa. Maintaining a healthy mouth through proper oral hygiene should be taught as a basic health practice such as eating right and exercising regularly. Dental care for children does more than just keep their teeth healthy, it keeps their bodies healthy, it helps them feel confident, it improves their speech, it fosters healthy habits, and more. When children’s dental care is not properly maintained, it can negatively impact them in a variety of ways.

The Negative Impacts Of Poor Oral Health In Children

Tooth Decay. When plaque accumulates on the teeth it can lead to tooth decay, which is when sections of teeth are worn down, sometimes to the point where a hole wears through the tooth. Tooth decay can cause issues with speaking and eating and can be painful or otherwise uncomfortable. Typically, tooth decay is related to sugary foods, an unhealthy diet, and poor oral health habits, such as not brushing teeth.

Gum Disease. Poor oral health can lead to gum disease, also called periodontitis, which can make the gums swollen, red, and prone to bleeding. When left untreated, gum disease can lead to infections in the soft tissue that can eventually damage the jaw bone. Because this condition is painful, once a child develops it they will be less likely to brush and floss their teeth as it may cause bleeding or more pain, creating a cycle of gum disease.

Stomach Issues. When there is pain in the mouth, it discourages children from properly chewing and eating, causing a lack of appetite or reliance on soft, highly processed foods that won’t hurt to chew. Not properly chewing their food can lead to digestive issues by swallowing portions that are too large and result in indigestion, stomach discomfort, or vomiting.

Speech Issues. Unaddressed orthodontic issues can severely affect speech. Overbites, underbites, gaps between teeth, and more can limit how the mouth and tongue move to create sound.

Low Self-Confidence. Oral health issues limit more than your child’s physical health, as feelings of insecurity about the appearance of their smile or halitosis (bad breath) related to other oral health issues may present. Children who have oral health problems require many visits to the dentist, which typically leads to more time away from school than their peers which can cause the child to fall behind in their schoolwork.

Heart Disease. An excess of bacteria in the mouth can contribute to the development of dangerous major health issues, as the bacteria in the mouth is swallowed and can travel to other areas of the body, such as the arteries. There is a relationship between people with excess plaque in their mouths and heart disease, or a buildup of plaque in the arteries. Oral health is suspected to affect heart health and vice versa.

Respiratory Diseases. The same buildup of bacteria that is at risk of being swallowed is also at risk of being breathed in. Bacteria in the lungs makes a person more susceptible to respiratory infections and a buildup of plaque in the lungs that can cause breathing difficulties.

Children’s Dental Care Services At Marlborough Dental In NE Calgary

Children’s dental care is an important part of their overall health. Children need to develop good oral health habits while young, such as brushing and flossing their teeth twice a day, avoiding sugary foods, drinking plenty of water, and going to the dentist twice a year for a checkup and cleaning. Children’s dental care is important for the health of their teeth and gums, but it is also crucial to their overall health and their self confidence. To visit a dentist that is experienced in children’s dental care, contact Marlborough Dental Centre in NE Calgary by calling 1-403-248-2066 or filling out the online contact form. We take a caring and gentle approach to your child's oral care and strive to educate our patients on dental care for children to set the foundation for a long-lasting, healthy smile.


Q: When should my child visit the dentist?
A: You should book your child's first dentist appointment when they reach the age of 1 year old or when they get their first tooth.

Q: How do I care for my child’s teeth if they’re too young to brush their own?
A: Your child should have their teeth brushed from the time their first tooth emerges. Use a small-headed, soft bristled toothbrush that is designed for children.

Q: When should my child start losing their teeth?
A: Children should lose their baby teeth somewhere between the ages of 6 and 12. If your child is over 12 and still has one or more baby teeth, visit Marlborough Dental Centre in NE Calgary to schedule a dental exam and determine the proper course of action.

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