Just like you, kids need to clean their teeth daily to control plaque buildup and lower the risk of tooth decay. However, younger children may need a little help. In today’s blog, your Dallas, TX, pediatric dentist will explain how to help your children brush, and what you need to know about keeping little smiles strong!
How Often Do Kids Brush?
First, once the initial teeth begin to erupt, they will need to be cleaned with a cloth, or possibly a small toothbrush that fits over your finger. Cleaning the teeth in the morning and before bed is crucial, and as your child grows you will upgrade to an age-appropriate toothbrush. We suggest assisting your toddler-aged children, and monitoring your older ones to ensure proper brushing.
Your children should brush in the morning and in the evening for at least two minutes to ensure every surface is reached. To help, you could use a timer or download a fun app or podcast to guide them and make the process more enjoyable. These actions help remove the particles left behind by food and drink, particles that could otherwise feed harmful bacteria and increase the risk of cavities.
Do They Need Fluoride Toothpaste?
Yes! For toddler aged children, we suggest a rice-sized blot of fluoride toothpaste, as the naturally-occurring mineral has been shown to strengthen the outer tooth enamel and help prevent cavities. As your children grow older, they may need a pea-sized amount. Look for toothpaste that contains fluoride or has the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance. Remember, this also benefits you too, so instead of focusing on promises to freshen breath or whiten teeth, choose one that contains the ingredient crucial for strong smiles: fluoride.
What About Flossing?
Often kids who brush properly may not floss. But flossing is even more important, as this removes the bits of food caught between teeth or along the gum line, which could be out of reach of a toothbrush’s bristles. As soon as there are teeth that sit next to each other in the smile, they need to be flossed. Move the tape up and down each side of every tooth, and dip slightly below the gum line. A floss pick may be easier initially, but as your kids grow floss tape is recommended. If you have any questions about keeping smiles healthy, then contact our team today!
Do You Have Questions About Keeping Smiles Healthy?
Our team wants to make sure families in our community maintain optimal oral health. To learn more about keeping little smiles clean from home, schedule an appointment by calling Pediatric Dental Care at Casa Linda in Dallas, TX today at 214-321-4880. We proudly serve patients who live around Casa Linda and all surrounding Dallas communities.