Brushing and Flossing Basics for Kids
Did you know that you can begin teaching your child routine dental care habits as early as three months old? To begin to familiarize your baby with the sensations associated with brushing, wipe your baby’s gums with a soft cloth or gauze after each feeding. As your child grows, you can transition to wrapping your finger with a soft cloth and imitate brushing. By the time your child has four or more teeth, they are ready for a toothbrush. When two teeth have emerged next to one another, flossing can begin. During this stage, you can teach your child not only about how to brush and floss, but why brushing and flossing are so important. Lifelong adherence to proper dental care begins at an early age. Use this guide to teach your children about healthy dental habits and routine visits to an affordable dentist in Thorndale.
- Brush your child’s teeth twice a day. Spend two minutes brushing, concentrating a good portion of this time on the back molars, where cavities often first develop.
- Many family dentistry experts recommend using plain water for brushing instead of toothpaste, up to the age of two. Talk to your dentist in Thorndale about your child’s specific needs.
- Allow your child to select their own child-sized toothbrush, making sure that it is small with soft bristles. If the bristles are still too hard, you can soak the brush in warm water to further soften the bristles.
- Replace toothbrushes every three to four months or when signs of wear appear, whichever occurs first. Teach your child not to share his or her toothbrush.
- Some toothpaste brands are not recommended for children under the age of six, so read the label when selecting your child’s toothpaste. If you and your dentist determine that using toothpaste is acceptable, place only a pea-sized amount on your child’s toothbrush.
- When your child has two teeth next to each other, begin teaching the basics of flossing. Many parents find that floss sticks or picks are easier to use at this stage.
- Dental sealants may be recommended by your dentist if your child has cavity-prone teeth. Dental sealants are plastic barriers that fill in gaps and spaces that may be particularly prone to collecting bacteria and debris.
- Talk to your family dentistry expert about your child’s fluoride needs, especially if your child is not regularly exposed to fluoridated drinking water. Supplements or fluoride treatments may be recommended.
- Around the ages of six or seven, your child should be able to brush and floss on their own. Until then, it is a good idea to assist and monitor your child’s brushing and flossing routine. You can also brush and floss along with them—teaching by example is a great way to instill healthy dental care habits in your kids.
Routine brushing and flossing, and regular visits to an affordable dentist in Thorndale, are habits that should last a lifetime for the sake of your child’s health. It’s never too early to begin teaching your child about the importance of proper dental care.
To learn about our family dentistry practice in Thorndale, call Gentle Dental of Thorndale today at (610) 590-1798 or make an appointment.
Gentle Dental offers affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in Thorndale. With 14 affiliated practices in the Greater Philadelphia area, our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At Gentle Dental of Thorndale, we provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover an affordable dentist who truly cares at Gentle Dental of Thorndale.