An Open Letter from Moms to Kids: Go Back in That House and Brush Your Teeth!

Dental health of our young ones (yes, millennials, too) is taking a nosedive — loving mothers are speaking out

Dear Young Ones,

Have a seat. We need to talk.

Don’t roll your eyes like that. This is serious.

We tell you this not to hurt you, but because we love you. (Yeah, yeah, yeah, we know you’ve heard that a million times — but it’s true, and achingly so. You’ll know that for real when you become moms or dads one day.)

Sure, you may be near-adults, or adults, at this point, but you’ll always be our babies. And it’s a mama’s job is to tell you the truth when no one else on God’s green earth will.

So here’s the thing. Your breath is rancid — and not just slightly rancid. It’s really, really bad.

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OK, there, we’ve said it.

And we know why it’s so bad. You’re not brushing your teeth.

Don’t try to deny it or make excuses. And don’t think breath mints do the trick. We’ve got proof.

Research from Hello Products, an oral care startup — and we know how much you like start-ups — has found that in a recent survey of 2,000 Americans, “Millennials are seriously lacking proper dental hygiene, with 30 percent of young Americans only brushing their teeth only once a day.”

Once a day? Seriously?

“Additionally, millennials are more likely than any other age group to make excuses to avoid going to the dentist,” said the survey.

The findings get even worse from there. The average millennial has gone more than two days at a time without brushing his or her teeth at least once, this source says.

Two days at a time! This is foul. We cannot allow you to carry on like that without setting you straight.

This info didn’t come from the coffee place down the block, by the way. Or from the barista whose shop you’re dropping way too much money at, too, while we’re at it.

No, these Hello Products folks call themselves naturally friendly. They sell organic and even vegan products, including an antigingivitis mouthwash whose tagline is “your swish come true.” They don’t test on animals, and they stay away from dyes, parabens, artificial sweeteners/flavors, triclosan, microbeads, and gluten. That should please you.

Sweethearts, nothing about your dental care habits is OK. And this needs to change. Immediately.

Related: Eight Reasons Your Teeth Need a Spring Cleaning

Don’t be embarrassed about any of this. Being afraid to go to the dentist is a thing. In your defense, the research suggests your age group is more afraid of the dentist than any other age groups. Heck, a third of Americans would rather give up sex for a month than go to the dentist.

On second thought, maybe that last one isn’t the best example.

The point is, you need to start making your own dental appointments — regularly. So that means you get on the phone, now, and call. Yes, actually make a phone call and set up the appointment by yourself.

Adulting is hard. We get it. But the only way to get better at it is by practicing. So take that cellphone in your hand and use it to get your dental house in order.

In case you’re not convinced we know what we’re talking about, there’s also this.

“Going to the dentist has many advantages aside from ensuring you have pearly whites and bad breath prevention,” says California-based dentist, Dr. Lawrence Fung, DDS, founder of Silicon Beach Dental. “Research has shown there are many linkages to oral health and your overall health.”

Related: The Best and Worst Foods for Our Teeth

Beloved sons and daughters, you must brush your teeth — at least twice a day — and get yourself to the dentist ASAP. And don’t just say “MMK.”

If you won’t do it for yourselves, do it for your dear old — we mean young — moms.

Mother’s Day isn’t far off, by the way. Maybe make it an early gift to us.

We’ll take it. We don’t need flowers or chocolate. It’s you we care about. (Actually, a card with your precious handwriting is always nice. We treasure them — as we treasure you.)

Love you (and your pearly, fresh-smelling, super-healthy whites),

Moms Across America

Michele Blood is a Flemington, New Jersey-based freelance writer and regular contributor to LifeZette.

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