Teaching Your Kids To Brush And Floss

Excellent oral hygiene is essential for a healthy smile, and we firmly believe in establishing a regular oral care routine right from the start.

When Should I Begin Oral Care?

Before your child’s teeth appear, you can wipe their gums gently after feeding, which will begin to get them accustomed to having their mouth cleaned. As soon as they get that first tooth, bring them to come and see us, and we can talk to you about how to clean their teeth regularly. Babies teeth need to be brushed gently with a soft baby toothbrush, and we can discuss which toothbrush and toothpaste to use. You only need a smear of toothpaste to clean a small child’s teeth as young children lack the ability to spit out the excess.

When Should My Child Start Brushing Their Teeth?

By age four or five, children usually want to start brushing their teeth on their own, but understandably lack the skills and dexterity to do this task properly. While it’s good to encourage them, you will need to continue supervising them and brushing their teeth with them until around age 8. As they get older and more independent, we can work directly with your child showing them how to look after their teeth on their own, demonstrating the right techniques for brushing and flossing. Also, we can talk about why good oral hygiene is so important for a healthy mouth and good overall health. We have a lot of experience in ensuring dental education is fun and enjoyable for children. For example, using plaque disclosing tablets that dye plaque pink is a fun way for a child to see why toothbrushing is necessary. When we work together as a team, we can help your child build healthy oral care habits for life.

When Should I Start Flossing Their Teeth?

As your child gets more teeth, they will gradually come into contact with each other, and you will need to begin flossing regularly, usually by age two or three. Flossing is important because it removes bacteria and food debris trapped between teeth that can otherwise cause tooth decay and gum disease. We can show you how to floss your child’s teeth gently and can talk about which tools are best to use. While conventional dental floss is effective, it may be easier to use floss holders, or we can discuss other solutions.

For more information, you may reach out to any Dr Smile Family Dentist branch: