What is the Best Oral Hygiene Regimen for my Child?

What is the Best Oral Hygiene Regimen for my Child?
Posted on 09/15/2016

Let’s be honest – there’s no handbook on parenting. How do you know when it’s the right time to start encouraging dental hygiene for your kids? There might not be a handbook, but at least you have dentists in Stuart, FL. We are here to tell you that it’s never too early to start worrying about your child’s dental health. If you can answer the question, “Does my child have at least one tooth?” with “Yes,” you are ready to start putting your child on a regimen.

Even before your child’s teeth erupt, start taking care of their gums. You can wipe their gums with a cloth or small piece of gauze. Once your child’s teeth start to come in (around 6-12 months), you can begin to brush the teeth with a toothbrush and water every day. Avoid using fluoridated toothpaste unless specifically directed by your dentist.

When you think about composing a cleaning regimen for your child, remember that routine means nothing if your technique is bad. When brushing your child’s teeth, always remember to brush the tongue and the inner surface of the front teeth. When you brush, be sure to angle the brush around 45 degree and brush gently to avoid causing any damage to the enamel.

Start flossing your child’s teeth when they have two teeth right next to each other. This happens around the age of 2. When you floss your child’s teeth, make sure to get a long enough string to build traction. When you insert the floss in between your child’s teeth, be sure to shape it like a “C” and press it against the tooth to remove plaque.

Most importantly, don’t forget those pesky back teeth. We know those mouths are small, but their baby teeth are vital to their development of speech and eating habits. Any damage to the baby teeth could cause them to fall out. What’s the big deal? You think. They’re just going to fall out anyway! Well, baby teeth are there for a reason. Remember that they hold special places in your child’s mouth so it will be shaped just right for when their adult teeth emerge.

You’ll want to continue this regimen in the morning and night until your child is about 6 years old and can do it on their own. Be aware that most kids still find it difficult to floss before age 10, so encouragement and help will still need to come from you.

If you really want your child to take care of his or her teeth, pediatric dentists in Stuart, FL advise you to take care of your own. It’s amazing what setting an example can do for your child. If your child sees you consistently brushing and flossing, they will, too.