Helping your child care for his or her teeth is an important part of developing good oral hygiene habits. We recommend that you brush and floss your child’s teeth for them until they are old enough to do so for themselves, and that you follow up with your child until you are sure that he or she can remove all debris from their mouth without assistance. For more information on tooth brushing, and to make your child’s appointment with our pediatric dentists in Houston, Texas, please contact Echeverri Dental Center at 713-956-8767.
Your child’s teeth may begin to erupt as early as 4 months old. As soon as the first tooth emerges, you should begin helping your child care for his or her teeth. Use a small brush with gentle bristles and a non-fluoridated toothpaste to start. Remember to use a very small amount of toothpaste. When your child is old enough not to swallow the toothpaste, you can begin using a pea-sized amount of fluoridated toothpaste.
You should brush your child’s teeth form them until they have the necessary motor skills to hold the toothbrush and effectively brush their teeth. When they begin brushing their own teeth, teach them the following brushing method to ensure the best results:
- Hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle towards the gum line
- Move the brush in a small circular motion, covering 1-2 teeth at a time
- Make sure to brush the front and the back of the teeth
- Use a sweeping motion along the length of the tooth, until all plaque is visibly removed
- Use a back-and-forth scrubbing movement on the chewing surfaces
- Gently brush the tongue to remove debris
We also recommend that you begin helping your child floss as soon as he or she has 2 teeth that touch each other. In the early years, you should floss for your child.
To learn more about tooth brushing and flossing, and to make your appointment with our pediatric specialists, please contact our office.