This time of year sees many families preparing for the imminent start of university life for their offspring. This marks a new chapter in the lives of these young adults, and for most it is the first time they will have lived away from home, which makes it more important that they are aware on how to look after their teeth to make sure they don’t let the rot set in.
Whether the student is heading for accommodation within the confines of a college or hall of residence, or in the independence of sole or shared private accommodation, the shift from home life will be considerable.
We all want to ensure that our kids can manage to live safely, and to conduct a healthy lifestyle, whilst flourishing at their chosen educational establishment. However, one area that often gets overlooked is the kids’ teeth. Leaving home for university often marks a break in the old routine, which usually included regular trips to the dentist.
A fairly common picture that we see involves some young adults who have completed their higher education but have not seen a dentist at all throughout that 3, 4 or 5 year period. During which time they may have indulged in a diet of sugary food and drinks, and possibly not been so diligent over their oral hygiene. After all, they have been having a very busy time at university – teeth don’t really get a look-in for some of these students. The picture we see often reveals the results of a very damaging period of neglect indeed.
So, what’s the answer? Well, if you have established in your child a good habit for taking care of their teeth, this should form the foundation of a good oral hygiene routine; with this attitude well engrained into their routine, this bodes well for their dental health. Better still if regular check-ups can be retained during trips home in the holidays. That way, good habits are maintained.
So get the diary out and plan ahead – we’re often busy during school and university holiday times, so don’t leave it too late to arrange an appointment with the dentist for a check-up in the holidays. Sometimes a session with the hygienist can be very useful too!