Back to school with a healthy smile in Surrey

30th August 2018

Some of you will be putting your feet up and sighing some big sighs of relief this week as your children return to school.

Others may be sad to see their little ones head off after enjoying a fun summer together.

Getting them back to school will mean no small task with the usual procurement of new uniforms, queues for school shoes and perhaps new pencil cases and school bags?

The start of the new school year is also an excellent time to get back on track with some new, improved habits, perhaps waking up a little earlier, a better breakfast? So why not use this time to get back on track with those habits that we let slip a little during the summer holidays?

Back on track

Let’s think about:

  • Better brushing habits – twice daily using a good toothbrush with a fluoride toothpaste
  • Better dietary habits – minimal snacking and then low sugar healthy snacks
  • No fizzy or sugary drinks – even flavoured water can cause tooth decay
  • Regular visits to your dentist – most dentists recommend at least twice a year, and if your child has a higher decay risk, they may suggest more visits – be guided by them.

Have a look at Denplan’s Sugar Swap in September if you’re struggling with getting your dietary habits back on track.

What’s in the bag?

So the bag may be packed with a new pencil case but what about the sports bag? New trainers? Football kit? Hockey? Rugby? If your child is participating in a contact sport, you will most likely have thought about protection, and most schools won’t let them play unless they have the proper protection. This includes teeth too.

We recommend that all children who participate in contact sports wear a gumshield or mouthguard to protect their teeth from a bang producing a fracture or even loss of a tooth.

Shop bought or custom made.

For young children, it is easy to assume that a shop-bought guard is easier and more cost-effective. After all, they are losing baby teeth and new teeth coming in at quite a speed. However, our experience shows that shop-bought guards can be tricky to use and don’t always give a good fit.

This results in a poorly fitting guard that is uncomfortable and your child will avoid wearing, resulting in very little protection for them.

Whilst a custom made guard costs more; they tend to be tolerated well by even the youngest children and therefore afford much more protection.


They won’t grow out of custom moulds quickly!

Most parents are concerned that they spend on a guard only to have to buy another in a few months. However, with the correct impression technique, we find that allowing for a bit of growth and trimming when required, most of the guards we provide will last a season of sportswear.

Yes, it will be more expensive than a shop-bought guard, but in the long run, they will get better protection from wearing a closely fitting comfortable guard that they are more likely to wear and not keep in their bag.

A tooth broken or knocked out can mean a lifetime of dental expenses and care. Custom made mouthguards can be made in any colour you like, team colours or school colours, whatever is your child’s preference.

If you need to get your children “Back on Track” with their dental care and arrange an appointment, why not call 020 8224 7562 and speak to Danielle who can arrange an appointment?

Dr Ali Rifai
Practice Principal
The Gentle Dental Practice

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