Oral Health for Teenagers (ages 13-19)


By the time your child reaches the teen years, he or she should be adept at cleaning his or her own teeth daily; know which dietary habits are harmful to dental (and general) health; and be a regular visitor the dentist’s office for routine cleanings and checkups. But even if all those things are the case, your work safeguarding their oral health is not over. After all, the teeth they now have are all permanent; poor decisions they make today can affect their dental health into the future. Your guidance, therefore, remains important.

Parents can help by making sure oral hygiene routines are up to par and that dental appointments are made and kept. This is particularly important if your teen wears braces, which can make keeping teeth clean a real challenge. Discourage oral piercings; though trendy among teens, they can lead to chipped teeth and inflamed gums. Keep your refrigerator free of beverages that contain sugar and tooth-eroding acid — such as sodas, so-called energy drinks and sports “ades.” And speaking of sports, if your teen is an athlete, make sure he or she wears a mouthguard to prevent oral injury; the most effective and comfortable mouthguards are those custom-made by a dentist.

Featured Topics

Oral Piercings

A risky fashion statement.

Dental Injuries

Act fast to save a knocked-out permanent tooth.

Tooth Decay

The world’s most widespread disease.

Dental Bonding

Artistic repair of chipped front teeth.

Athletic Mouthguards

A wise investment for your teen’s dental health.

Oral Hygiene

How to brush and floss with braces.

Root Canals

There’s no reason to fear them!

How to Floss

Just brushing is not enough!