Social media impacts how happy and healthy your child is. Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram and other platforms are image-driven, full of pictures kids take of themselves and each other. We all know that children are far from kind to each other. Critiques about appearance can be so harsh that children wither under them, sometimes with tragic consequences.
As a cosmetic dentist who serves children, it’s easy to point to the things I can do to help children feel better about their smile. Tooth whitening, straightening the teeth, and other treatments all have their role. But someone can have the best teeth in the world and still get picked apart by social media. As a parent, the most important thing you can do about your child’s smile is be aware of it and make sure you’re seeing it regularly.
It’s easy to get shut out of your kid’s life by their phone. Sometimes we’re on our own phones at the same time, which doesn’t help the situation. Technology has its place, but it doesn’t have all the places. Every single day you need some phone-free time with your child, talking to them about what’s going on in their day. Not every conversation has to be a deep, profound discussion of great importance! Maintaining a steady, open communication channel is the most important thing. This will make it easier for your child to tell you if some situation is getting out of hand on social media, so you can step in and support them.
If you can’t remember the last time you saw your child smile, talk to them about it. And check out what’s being going on on their social media accounts. It can make a real difference.
If your child has concerns about the way their smile looks, we’ll be happy to talk to them about it and explain what the options are. Everything is done is a low-stress, family friendly environment, so your child will feel comfortable.