May 26, 2016
As we approach the end of the school year, it’s time to start preparing for the hectic summer months. For a lot of kids, this also means the fun and freedom of summer camp. But how can you ensure that your child is making mouth-healthy choices while away? We’ve come up with a few tips that will help you prepare your child for an awesome – and healthy – stay away from home.
1 – Check out the Menu
A great place to start is by checking out the camp’s meal options and dining schedule. Most summer camps make this information available to prevent any potential dietary complications. After looking over the menu, sit with your child and discuss the healthy options that they would enjoy. Talk to them about the importance of drinking water and limiting sugary drinks such as soda, lemonade and sports drinks. Encourage them not to overindulge on desserts and sweets while away, and be sure that they don’t eat too much junk food – like chips, crackers and other starchy foods – that can stick to their teeth and eat away at their enamel.
2 – Pack a Healthy Mouth Go-Bag
Create a small, packable bag that has everything your kids need to keep their mouths clean. We suggest packing an electric travel toothbrush, as well as travel-sized toothpaste, mouthwash and floss. Also, add in some sugar-free chewing gum that contains Xylitol, which helps fight cavities. Make sure that their go-bag is small enough to pack away in a backpack, and put it somewhere that it won’t get lost. Travel-sized items are recommended, but you may need to pack additional amounts if their camp lasts longer than a week.
3 – Send Reminders
Children are forgetful, and in a busy environment like summer camp, they’re also distracted and likely to forego brushing their teeth in favor of hanging out with new friends. An awesome way to get your kids to take care of their teeth is by occasionally sending them some simple reminders. Text your child when they wake up, and right before they go to bed to remind them to brush and floss! Worried that you may forget to send them a reminder? Another way to reach them is by setting simple, recurring reminders on their phone that will alert them when it is time to brush.
4 – Make it a Game
Before your child leaves for camp, challenge them to a teeth-brushing competition, and set up a secret prize for the winner. Have your child send you a photo of themselves brushing their teeth each time they wake up or go to bed. As soon as you receive it, send them a photo back of you brushing your teeth! If your child sends a new photo for each time they’re supposed to be brushing their teeth, then they win! Make sure that they clearly understand one rule: if they brush, floss and rinse twice per day then they win. Parents win by having children with healthier mouths.
Summer camp can be a rewarding experience for both children and parents alike. With this guide, your camper can their mouth clean, which is just one less thing you’ll have to worry about this summer. As a bonus, these same rules apply for visits to grandma’s house!