Keep Your Kids Cavity-Free

This page has been automatically translated from English. MSDH has not reviewed this translation and is not responsible for any inaccuracies.

Every child in Mississippi deserves good dental health.


Children miss school days, struggle to pay attention in school, and can have low self-esteem due to dental pain or problems with their teeth and gums.

Brush Right!

Basic tooth care for kids is simple:

  • Brush teeth at least twice a day. Young children will need help to make sure they're reaching all their tooth surfaces.
  • Use a fluoride toothpaste to reduce the risk of cavities.
  • After snacks, sweet drinks, or meals when brushing isn't possible, rinse with plain water.
  • Clean between any teeth that are touching teeth by flossing, or by using a cleaning tool, at least once a day.

Watch How!

Is there a right way to brush teeth? You bet there is! In this video, a professional dentist takes two minutes to show you the best way to brush.

Keeping Away Tooth Decay: Snack Smart!

Smart snacking can keep your children in school instead of the dentist's office. Snacking and sipping throughout the day is the fast track to tooth decay.

Save sweets and sugary drinks for mealtimes. Sugars are less likely to stay in the mouth and cause decay.


Keep snacks low in sugar. Between meals, avoid sweets, sugary beverages and sports drinks. Try fruit, nuts or sugarless gum instead.


Save sports drinks for strenuous hot weather activity. These sweet drinks are high in sugar and offer no nutritional value. Water or low-fat milk is always healthier.


Read nutritional labels to find low-sugar foods and snacks and find foods where high sugar can be hiding.


Why: Consuming sugary food and drink throughout the day constantly feeds oral bacteria. These bacteria then produce acids that eat away at tooth enamel and decay teeth. Skip the sweets, or rinse well with water after between-meal snacks.

This month, try these ways to get your kids involved in better oral health:

Brush and floss as a family. It's fun, and models good dental hygiene habits for your child.

Take your children shopping to select healthy snacks. Go through the store with your kids and pick out their favorite snacks. Tell them whether the snacks you choose make your teeth happy (low in sugar and carbohydrates) or sad (high in sugar or carbohydrates). Let them choose healthy snacks (including drinks low in sugar).

More About Good Dental Health for Kids and Babies

Last reviewed on Feb 17, 2017 request edits
Mississippi State Department of Health 570 East Woodrow Wilson Dr Jackson, MS 39216 866‑HLTHY4U Contact and information

Facebook Twitter Instagram RSS

Accredited by the national Public Health Accreditation Board