Teaching your children good habits is one of the most important things a parent has to do.
Teaching good brushing and flossing habits will give your kids a healthy habit that will last a lifetime.
Healthy oral hygiene can begin as soon as your child’s first teeth appear.
You should begin brushing their teeth with a soft bristled toothbrush with just water after every meal. Sometime after two years old they can graduate to a fluoride toothpaste.
The main thing when determining whether to use a toothpaste or not is if they have been able to learn whether to spit out excess toothpaste into the sink and rinse or not.
Make sure that you yourself are demonstrating good brushing habits!
Kids learn from watching and a parent who brushes after every meal is setting the best possible example.
Bring your child with you to brush after a meal and chances are your child will be asking you to brush their teeth in no time! Kids naturally want to imitate their parents or siblings.
Not only are you helping your kids, you’re helping protect yourself from gum disease!
When they’re ready for toothpaste
For children less that two years old, apply just a tiny smear smaller than a pea-sized amount.
For children ages 2-5, apply a pea-sized amount.
Parents should still brush their children’s teeth up until at least age five.
After their fifth birthday, use your best parental judgement to decide if your kids are ready to brush alone or not.
How to Brush
- Step 1: The parent or child should use a soft-bristled toothbrush and angle it at 45 degrees towards the gums of the upper and lower teeth.
- Step 2: The toothbrush should be moved gently in a back-and-forth motion with short strokes along the teeth and gums. This technique should be continued along every tooth’s interior and exterior surface in a similar way.
- Step 3: The tip of the brush should be placed in an upright position to reach behind the front teeth on the top and bottom.
- Step 4: Brush the tongue to remove bacteria on the surface.
How to Floss
- Step 1: Hold a short length of floss between the thumb and index finger, twining it around one finger at each end to gain better control. Be careful not to apply too much pressure when inserting the floss between the child’s teeth.
- Step 2: Adjust the floss into a ‘C’ shape curve around each tooth and slide it up and down gently along the side of the tooth and under the gumline.
- Step 3: A new section of floss should be used for each tooth to avoid reinsertion of food and plaque.
- Step 4: An interdental brush can be used to clean between tooth surfaces that have space.
If you have any questions
please call our office at 972-964-3774
David Wilhite and our office specialize in children’s dental care and we are excited to help you.
We begin taking appointments for children at age three or above.