Every parent knows that daily brushing and flossing are the key components to your child’s preventive dental care. But there are other things parents can do to help ensure their children enjoy good dental health. Dr. Erpenbach believes that maintaining a healthy balance of bacterial flora in the mouth is another important part of preventive care.
Using an antiseptic mouthwash like Listerine or Scope can help eliminate bad bacteria. One way of protecting the good oral flora in your child’s mouth is preventing dry mouth.
Dry mouth can be caused by climate, diet, medication and a variety of other problems, but there is one way to minimize dry mouth that children find to be a lot of fun. Chewing sugarless gum that is sweetened by an ingredient called Xylitol has been clinically proven to help produce saliva, thereby helping eliminate dry mouth.
In addition to helping eliminate dry mouth, chewing a Xylitol based gum can also help your child exercise the muscles that control the jaw and stimulate the roots of the teeth to promote bone density and growth of new teeth.
To choose the right sugarless gum to promote your child’s dental health, look for Xylitol on the label. Some gum brands are made specifically for this purpose and will list Xylitol as an active ingredient. These products can be found at Whole Foods and other organic grocery providers. Other sugarless gums that contain Xylitol as the main ingredient can be just as beneficial. You can identify whether xylitol is the main ingredient by it being listed first in the order of ingredients on the nutritional label.
To schedule a regular professional cleaning and checkup for yourself or your child, contact our office at 865-584-8630.