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Back to school dental care

Dental care is a nation-wide issue that, especially in children, is often overlooked. In Australia, nearly half of children six years of age have decay in their baby teeth. To minimise the possibility of pain, or procedures that would have been unnecessary given a healthy dental state, make sure your child’s dental care is up to standard. But what exactly is up to standard? What are the essentials for keeping your children’s teeth in a healthy state without going to excess? The answer is the 2x2x2 rule.

The 2x2x2 rulechild with healthy teeth smiling

A general rule that works due to both its simplicity and memorability is the 2x2x2 rule. The two major daily activities, brushing and flossing, should be done for two minutes twice a day. The dentist should be visited twice a year – yes, every 6 months. This is the most surefire way you can ensure your child’s teeth remain healthy. Most people routinely brush their teeth, but a lot don’t floss. While it’s importance may not be immediately apparent, the benefits, for a two minute a day activity, for both you and your child, are paramount.

Flossing

Some people floss but many just haven’t added it to their or their children’s dental regime. However, given what it can do for such a short amount of time a day, every person concerned with prime dental care should add it to their morning, and evening routine. Here’s why:

Cleanliness – plaque can find a home in all areas of the teeth. About 40% of it resides where only flossing can remove it. Removing this will not only reduce your chance of further complications, but also ensure that your breath stays nicer, for longer, as well.

Youthfulness – gum disease is a terrible condition, and can unfortunately add years onto certain people who find themselves afflicted. One of the best ways to prevent against this is by flossing. So while there may not be any instant gratification in the act, approach it as you would any other activity designed to keep your body in top shape for the longest amount of time.

Dentist benefits for school children aged 2 – 17

There are certain benefits provided by the government to some families which ensure your children are getting the dental care they need. From 1st January 2017, however, the Child Dental Benefits Schedule will be closed. This is not, and never was, your only option though. Public dental services for school aged children differ depending on your state. The following are the differences between each.

ACT – child and youth dental services provided to those under 14 who live or attend an ACT school.

NSW – persons under 18 within the boundary of the health district are eligible for general dental services and medicare cover for a portion of their service.

NT – free dental services are provided from birth to 18 years of age through school-based clinics, community clinics and mobile services.

QLD – all Queensland resident children four years of age or older who have not completed year 10 of secondary school are eligible for publicly funded oral healthcare via Queensland Health’s Child and Adolescent Oral Health Services.

SA – dental care is free for all babies, all children not yet at school and most children and young people under 18 years.

TAS – Oral Health Services Tasmania welcomes all children under 18 years of age, including preschoolers, for dental care.

VIC – free for children and young people aged 0 – 17 years who hold a healthcare or pensioner concession card, or who are dependants of concession card holders.

WA – all school children are eligible for the School Dental Service from the year they turn five until the end of year 11 or the attainment of 17 years of age – whichever comes first.

Best Practice

To maintain good, healthy teeth it’s important to visit your Dentist for a checkup every six months, no matter what your age. Call Pain Free Dental today and make your appointment.