Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I told you so!!

There is something that I hate to see and hear at my office.
It is to see a parent tell a child "I told you to brush your teeth"
while they are shaking their finger at them.

This phrase is said by parents whose children have cavities
and will need to get their teeth filled.

Now, I am a parent of 5 children myself.
And I am all for natural consequences.
If I tell you to bring a jacket and you don't and you get cold,
well then that is the child's fault and a little cold air won't do any harm.
But the whole scene in the dental office is different.
If we are putting fillings into permanent teeth, then your child
is bound to need fairly extensive work on these teeth later in life.

A tooth that has no filling is MUCH better of long term then
a tooth that has even a small filling that is placed very young.

I know dentistry does not seem like a serious health issue, but it can be.
Its like taking your kids to get immunized.
They cry and say they don't want to.
You then say, "Fine but you'll regret it."
Then 10 years down the road your kids gets some life threatening disease
and you just shake your finger and say "See. Told ya you should
have gotten those immunizations."

You would never do that.
Some things are just too important.
You force your kids to take vitamins.
You make them get their immunizations.

You SHOULD make them brush their teeth.
Either under your supervision or you do it for them when they are young.


  1. Parents shouldn't be too hard to their children when it comes to brushing their teeth. There are ways to make it fun like letting them use cartoon toothbrushes and strawberry flavored toothpaste.

    Bradley Bedell

  2. I think if you start brushing when they first have teeth and you do it consistently, it creates a habit. I have kids who are 9, 7, 4, and 1, and because we have been so consistent, they freak out if they are put to bed and haven't brushed their teeth yet! Of course, this only usually happens when we are coming home from a long trip and they fall asleep in the car and we try to put them into bed without doing any of our nighttime routines. The point is, they aren't going to start on their own. They need us to teach them, like anything else. Although I wonder if the kids who don't brush consistently have parents who don't brush consistently?