Think Beyond The Books

Those tiny white pearls….

Here, I am going to write about the importance of primary teeth and how to take care of them. Not only that I am a dentist but also as a mother, I feel that each and every parent should be aware of the crucial role of primary teeth in their child’s development.

Most of the children get their first tooth around 6-9 months old and a complete set of 20 milk teeth by the age of 3 years. From 3 -6 years, it will only be the primary teeth in your child’s mouth. From 6th year, they will start getting their permanent teeth one by one and around 12 – 14 years, they would get 28 permanent teeth in their mouth. The remaining four teeth called “wisdom teeth” will erupt around 18-23 years.

Alright…we have seen the eruption pattern of teeth. Questions may pop- out in your mind

“Anyhow my child’s primary teeth are going to fall out one by one from 6 years. Then, why should I look after them?”

Just because primary teeth, often known as “baby teeth/ milk teeth” won’t stay forever, doesn’t mean they don’t need conscientious care.

Can’t believe..? Yes, primary teeth are of paramount importance as they

  • Promote good nutrition through proper chewing and eating
  • Assist in speech development
  • Build self-esteem by providing a beautiful smile
  • Serve as guides for the eruption of permanent (adult) teeth, holding the space into which these new teeth will erupt and
  • Aid proper development of jaw muscles and jaw bones.

So, now…

How to take care of your child’s teeth?

Your child’s gums and newly erupting teeth should be gently wiped after each feeding with a gauze pad or damp washcloth soaked in warm water. From age 2, using a soft-bristled toothbrush and no more than a thin smear of fluoridated toothpaste brush your child’s teeth two times a day. Up to 6 years of age, your child will need your assistance in brushing. Apart from brushing, flossing and professional check-ups are mandatory for a healthy mouth.

What are the consequences if primary teeth care is neglected?

Baby teeth do get dental decay as adult teeth. In the initial stage, decay will cause intermittent pain and therefore trouble in eating, sleeping and concentrating in school. Eventually, decay in baby teeth progress faster and it may lead to serious medical issues if unnoticed.

As mentioned above, primary teeth stay in place and provide guidance for the erupting permanent teeth. If because of decay, primary teeth shed off early, then upcoming adult teeth may not come up in the right place where they should be. This will lead to poorly aligned teeth which will be hard to maintain clean as well as have a poor aesthetics.

When should be the first dental visit for your little one?

Visit dentist within six months of your child’s first tooth appearing, and certainly by age one. It may sound too early, but the sooner your child begins getting regular dental check-ups, the healthier his/her mouth will stay throughout his/her life. By having regular dental check–ups, your dentist can teach you proper pediatric oral hygiene techniques and importance of fluoride usage, check for cavities and watch for developmental problems.

Realizing the preponderance of those 20 tiny white pearls, consummate them and set an example for your child so that he/she can have a healthy & beautiful smile, for the lifetime.

Image courtesy of Photostock at www.FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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Children & their world of Colours

Painted hands of Master Kavin Krish @ Ingress Junior School

Title: Children & their world of Colours

Children tend to prefer bright and bold colours over the subtle hues. Researches had indicated that children’s eyes may not be adapted to see dull, dim colours very well or even at all.

According to a 2005 research article published by the BBC, children can see and even appreciate colours as early as four months old. At that age, however, their eyes may not yet be sufficiently developed to recognize various shades of colour or differentiate dull colours like grey and brown. The researchers concluded that babies are unable to distinguish variations in colour, which reinforces the notion that babies can only see bright, fully saturated colours. In addition, the research reported by the BBC appears to negate a long-standing myth that children are colour-blind, though it supports the idea that they are partially colour-blind.

Colours also help children to express themselves. Colour is a very useful mean to express certain emotions, especially those hard to express.

 

Learn Colours from Nature

Learn colours from fruits and vegetables | Image courtesy: berkeleywellness.com

Many researches in the past have confirmed the association of colour and mood. Having listened to a fairy tale with the happy end, children get drawing with a yellow pencil; after some sad story they tend to draw with dark brown colours.

What’s your child mood? Is he or she happy, excited, sad, frightened or angry? Psychotherapists teach children to distinguish feelings; call them and discuss them in a positive way using colour. This technique is called ‘Colour your life’ the best results are achieved with children above six, who know the names of colours and understand their own feelings.

A psychologist gives a child a sheet of paper and a set of crayons of basic colours: yellow, red, blue, green, violet, grey, black and so on. A kid is asked to choose a colour for the named feeling. There are following combinations arising often: red – anger, orange – joy, grey – loneliness. Then a kid is given a blank sheet of paper and asked to draw his or her own feelings. For example if he is sometimes happy, sometimes sad then he or she may use different colours, connected with different moods. It’s very interesting to watch what colours a kid chooses, how intensively he uses them and the order that they appear on the paper.

Whatever colour activity you choose for your kid, you’d better let him or her choose colours. If you insist on certain colour your child may revolt.  And if you suggest a wrong colour the situation may turn even worse.

Reference: ehow.com & psy.rin.ru

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Unravelling the mystery of Children Learning Process!!!!

How Children Learn

Children are playful by nature. Their earliest exploring experiences to satisfy their natural sensory urges automatically leads them to play, first by themselves and eventually with others. When they play with joy and learn in the process, then it is a pleasant experience. They develop a positive approach to learning.

I have observed sadly that most of my friends breathe down their young child’s neck to make him/her study hard and harder. They think it is the parent’s duty to do so. I disagree.

Here are my thoughts: 

It is very important to understand how your child likes to learn best. I recommend you spend some time analysing and identifying the child’s dominant senses.

Do they like pictures and reading? If so, you can encourage your child to use drawings, pictures, maps or diagrams as part of their learning. Some children like listening to explanations and reading aloud. You could use stories to encourage this kind of child. And most children enjoy learning through songs, chants and rhymes.

Does your child like to touch things and physically move about? Some children have lots of energy! You could play games to get them moving or running around, acting out rhymes or stories or even dancing!

Quieter children may have a good vocabulary and be good readers. Word games, crosswords, word searches, anagrams and tongue twisters would be good to encourage these children.

Other children require logical, clear explanations of rules and patterns, or like to work out the rules for themselves. They may be good at maths too. For these children, activities such as puzzles, problem-solving, ordering or categorising provide ideal opportunities for learning.

All children are intelligent, only differently so. While some children are visual learners and some are auditory learners. It is important to understand that auditory intelligent kids get more stimulated when they listen to music…

Some children are outgoing and sociable and can learn a language quickly because they want to communicate. They are not worried about making mistakes. Other children are quieter and more reflective. They learn by listening and observing what is happening. They don’t like to make mistakes and will wait until they are sure.

If your child is outgoing they may prefer learning in groups with other children, whereas a quieter child may need more private, quiet time to feel more secure about learning a language. A bedtime story in English could be an opportunity to provide this quiet time.

It’s important that learning is fun for children in the early stages of life. It needs to be about doing things with them that they like. They might find unusual ways of doing things – for a toddler, building blocks aren’t just for making towers, and paint can be used without a brush! Show them how things work, but if they want to experiment, let them.

Please do not complain that, “My son is not ‘like me” The ways to stimulate his brain to ‘learn’ could be way different from the way you learn.  Some are logically intelligent and may become like Ramanujam where as a visual learner could become an artiste.  Society has a need for all kinds of people who are good at different things.

Don’t push your child too hard. Children develop in their own ways and in their own time. Try not to compare them to other children. You can also encourage reading, by reading to and with them. Look at the pictures together. This will help younger children make sense of the words.

It is also good to talk to them a lot, about everyday things when cooking or cleaning. This will give you a chance to teach them how things work and they will be able to ask you questions. Get ready for lots of “why’s?”

Children with natural intelligence learn better, perhaps with their simple play in the kitchen, or by accompanying you on a super exciting trip to the shop to buy vegetables or while looking stars from the balcony.  Teaching moments and learning moments are every where.  Using these moments correctly makes learning easy and fun!

Reference: http://learnenglishkids.britishcouncil.org/en/parents

Image Courtesy: Willow Tree Learning

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