How to Help Your Child Care for Their Dental Appliances at Summer Camp
How to Help Your Child Care for Their Dental Appliances at Summer Camp

How to Help Your Child Care for Their Dental Appliances at Summer Camp

Summer is upon us, and the sun in Long Beach, California is shining bright! Orthodontics of Long Beach understands many of our young orthodontic patients go to summer camp during this time. This can present a challenge since children are out of their routines. For example, they may be tempted to skip brushing or flossing or want to indulge in the same foods their peers are eating. It can also be a time of accidental injuries due to sports or other activities. We understand the majority of the responsibility falls onto parents of younger children, and we are here to help you set them up for orthodontic success at summer camp!

How Can I Help My Child Preserve Their Dental Wear at Camp?

Dental wear like braces and aligners are essential to protect. Not doing so can lead to pain and discomfort or jeopardize orthodontic progress. However, Orthodontics of Long Beach in Long Beach, CA is here to partner with parents so their children can get the most out of summer camp without compromising oral health and safety. Below are some of our top suggestions for setting your child up for success and helping them preserve their dental wear at summer camp:

Pack a Thorough Dental Kit

Typical dental kit accessories include a toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss. They also sometimes include mouthwash, depending on the age of the child. However, children with orthodontics will need some extra accessories to help keep their teeth and dental appliances clean. 

What Should I Pack if My Child Has Braces?

Interdental brushes are incredibly helpful for children with braces and can easily remove stuck food from between wires. In addition, using an interdental brush and swishing with mouthwash is beneficial for holding children over until they can brush and floss properly. Floss and floss threaders or pre-threaded floss are also necessary for maneuvering under and over wires. This is especially essential if a palatal expander is involved. Other necessities can include a mirror, cotton balls, and wax in case of a dental emergency. 

What Should I Include if They Have Clear Aligners?

Children with clear aligners need to brush and rinse them before reinserting them. If they are out and about, giving them a travel-sized toothbrush can enable them to brush their teeth and aligners to keep them clean. It is also a great idea to include a backup pair of aligners in case they are accidentally lost or damaged.

How Can I Help My Child Keep Up with Their Retainer?

Instructing your child on when to wear their retainer and packing an extra case can help them keep track of it. However, if your child is prone to losing items, it may be best to label the case so it can easily be identified if it gets lost. Another idea is attaching the case to a lanyard or a hook on a backpack.

Educate Them on What to Do in an Orthodontic Emergency

Children should know what constitutes an orthodontic emergency and what to do if one occurs. Common orthodontic emergencies include poking or protruding braces wires and broken or loose brackets.

What Should They Do If a Wire is Poking or Protruding?

Wires can come loose or break. They can then begin to irritate the mouth and even cause sores. However, there are a few things your child can do to mitigate this irritation and hold them over until the wires are fixed. First, they can take a pencil and use the eraser to push the wire back against the teeth. They can then put wax over the wire to keep it from irritating and rubbing against the gums. 

How Can They Temporarily Fix a Broken or Loose Bracket?

Braces brackets can break or become loose while children are at camp. Orthodontics of Long Beach needs to know if this happens so we can fix it. However, they can slide the bracket back into position and put wax over it to help hold it in place until we can see them.

Ensure They Understand What to Eat

Being away from home with their peers can tempt even the most diligent children to splurge. However, over time, acidic and sugary foods and beverages can damage teeth and dental appliances. Therefore, it is a good idea to talk with them beforehand and go over what to eat and drink and which items are best avoided. 

Invest in a Mouthguard

Outdoor activities like sports are often associated with summer camps. However, children with orthodontic wear are susceptible to mouth injuries. Orthodontics of Long Beach highly recommends investing in a mouthguard to protect your child’s teeth during intense activities. Mouthguards also decrease the likelihood of inconvenient and uncomfortable dental emergencies!

Maintain Open Communication with Camp Staff

Keeping an open line of communication with camp staff is one way to ensure your child has what they need. You can communicate to them about your child’s orthodontic needs, and they can inform you in the event of an orthodontic emergency. They may even be beneficial in helping your child remember to care for their dental appliances.

Let Orthodontics of Long Beach Assess Their Progress Before Leaving

Orthodontics of Long Beach in Long Beach, California suggests bringing your child in so we can assess their orthodontic progress before they leave for summer camp. We can check their braces or aligners for any issues and make any adjustments needed. A dental check-up before going to camp can help us catch and fix any problems before they arise! We will also be happy to answer any questions you have concerning orthodontic care while they are away.

When Was Your Child’s Last Orthodontic Appointment?

Staying on top of orthodontic appointments during the summer is essential to maintain orthodontic progress. Additional tips we have for orthodontic success at camp are to help them pack a dental kit, know what to do if a dental emergency arises, remind them what to eat, invest in a mouthguard, and communicate regularly with camp staff. Our Long Beach office will also be happy to check their dental appliances before leaving!

Help set your child up for success at summer camp! Orthodontics of Long Beach will be happy to assess their progress before they leave, so contact us today by calling (562) 667-2973!


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