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Good dental care begins at home in a family setting. This means more than teaching children how to brush and floss. Here are some fun ideas:

Mouth Self Portrait:

Collect a handheld mirror, colorful crayons and a sheet of computer paper. Beckon your child to a well-lit area and ask them to look in the mirror, open their mouth and to name the parts of the mouth that they can see, like their teeth, gums, tongue, or the roof of their mouth. If they have trouble naming some of the things, you can teach them the words. Then ask them to draw what they see and help them label each part of the mouth. This is a great activity for a 3-year-old.

Taste Test:

Gather edible items which are sweet, sour, bitter, salty or savory. Tell your child to stick out their tongue in front of a mirror and point out the bumps on the tongue. Tell them that these bumps are called taste buds and that they help them know what food tastes like. Have them try each food and ask whether the food is sweet, sour, salty, bitter or savory. Review the right answers with them at the end.

Cavity Spread:

Your child might have a vague idea that cavities are bad, but they might not really understand why. To help them get it, draw a tooth using a colored Sharpie on a paper towel. Then place a colorful dot on the tooth with a watercolor based marker. Point to it and say, “This is a cavity”. Then spill a little bit of water onto the dot and say “This is what happens when your tooth is exposed to lots of sugar.”

If it’s time for a dental checkup in the Bozeman, Montana area, you can call Suite Dental at 406-602-4100 for an appointment with Dr. Roderick Spencer.