If you are the parent of a teenager, you may already have some concerns about their well-being. As young men and women progress toward complete independence, some make questionable choices when it comes to dental health. At Harris Dental, we can lend a hand.
You may know Phoenix teens that skip meals and others that eat ramen noodles for lunch and dinner. Some spend more hours on Instagram than they do sleeping. Braces can hinder proper brushing. Eating disorders such as bulimia can quickly erode enamel and hurt a smile.
Dental problems manifesting in the adolescent years can impact teeth for life. Let’s explore some important dental issues for adolescents.
The third molars usually erupt between late adolescence and the mid-twenties. Common wisdom teeth problems include bite misalignment, dental caries, gum disease, and damage to the nearby teeth. It is important to monitor wisdom teeth and follow the advice of your dentist.
Parents who notice their young adult abnormally preoccupied with body image and weight loss should be on the lookout for bulimia and anorexia. These serious disorders should not be ignored. Parents are advised to seek treatment immediately if they discover that their teen is binging and purging or intentionally restricting food.
Oral Health and Orthodontia
Braces can make proper brushing problematic. Toothbrushes and flossing devices that squirt water can help adolescents with braces clean their teeth and gums.
If you visit any Arizona high school during lunch hour, you will see that sugar-laden soda, juice, and energy drinks are becoming a beverage staple. (Perhaps we adults are setting a bad example.) While juice is definitely the healthiest choice of the three, heavy juice consumption can hurt enamel just as effectively as a can of Coke. Water is the best drink for teeth as well as calcium-rich milk, which leads us to our next section.
Inadequate Calcium Intake
Some youth who drank milk daily as kids curtail their consumption when they start eating meals away from home. This is unfortunate because calcium is just as essential for adolescents as it is for younger children. For strong teeth and bones, encourage your teen to enjoy low-fat dairy products daily.
Athletics benefit adolescents in a number of ways but, unfortunately, also pose a threat to teeth. Make sure your teen wears a protective custom mouthguard when participating in any activity where a mouth injury can occur.
At Harris Dental in Phoenix, we encourage parents to be vigilant about twice-yearly dental exams and cleanings for their teens. Many oral troubles arise unnoticed. We offer general and cosmetic dentistry. Call to schedule your next appointment today.
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