Teeth Brushing Tips for Kids

In this post, we’ll look at teeth brushing tips for kids.

Smiles in Framingham provides the best pediatric dental services in Framingham in the surrounding areas. Dr. Deborah A. Himelhoch, DDS MS, MMSc, is a board-certified orthodontist with over 37 years of experience. She’s a board-certified orthodontist and also board-certified in pediatric dentistry. Thus, the whole family can enjoy top-quality award-winning care in our family-friendly, comfortable office.

From the time the first tooth arrives, it’s time to start caring for them. Therefore, plan on bringing your child to the dentist before their first birthday. Doing so will help lead to a lifetime of good habits, better health, and beautiful smiles.

Dental Care Begins Before the First Tooth

Even before the first tooth emerges, it’s a good practice to wipe down the baby’s gums. We recommend using a soft infant toothbrush or cloth and water to wipe down the mouth daily. Bacteria builds up on their gums and can be wiped away to keep them clean.

By getting your baby used to daily cleanings, it paves the way for introducing them to brushing.

See more in the video below:

After the First Tooth: Teeth Brushing Tips for Kids

 When the first tooth emerges, it’s time to begin using a tiny amount of toothpaste. But how much? For kids younger than age three, use a dollop of toothpaste about the size of a grain of rice. Since babies can’t spit out the toothpaste, you can have them tilt their heads, so the paste dribbles into the sink, a cup, or washcloth.

By the age of three to six, you can increase the amount to the size of a pea. When older, kids learn to hold a kid-size brush and spit out the toothpaste. 

To make the process more fun, kids can pick out a brush that has their favorite colors or character on them. To make sure they’re safe, look for the American Dental Association (ADA) seal and soft bristles. Also, kids’ toothpaste comes in a wide variety and can keep kids interested in brushing.

 Until around the age of six, parents generally need to do the brushing. By that age, kids are ready to do it independently, using the right amount of toothpaste and spitting it out.

Brush Two Times a Day for Two Minutes

The ADA recommends getting in the habit of brushing twice daily for two minutes. Also, they suggest setting a timer and playing a child’s favorite music. Or, you can use counting as a game as you complete two minutes of brushing. After brushing, check out their teeth and make any touch-ups needed.

By making it a game, the experience becomes more fun. As an additional incentive, you can create a reward chart and place a star on it when kids complete brushing. When a child completes a week with all the stars fill in, offer praise for a job well done! 

As they brush, teach them why brushing can help their smiles remain healthy and happy.

See more about what to expect at your child’s first dental visit here. We look forward to helping you keep your family healthy and happy, with a lifetime of smiles!

How to Brush Teeth

To properly brush, the ADA suggests holding the brush at a 45-degree angle to the gums. Then, gently brush back and forth in short strokes. After brushing the outer surfaces, move to the inner teeth and the tops of the teeth.

To reach the inside surfaces, you may tilt the brush vertically and make up and down strokes. See how it’s done in the video below.

See more in the video from the American Dental Association below:

See more about caring for kids’ dental care during Covid-19 in our recent blog. To learn more about the steps we’re taking to keep everyone safe, please see our recent post here. 

Contact us here to schedule a visit.

Call us anytime at 508-872-0555. 

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Dr. Himelhoch is trained and experienced in providing care for both pediatric and adult orthodontic problems to the residents of Framingham, MA. Also, we’re proud to serve Southborough, Ashland, Wayland, Natick, Marlborough, Hopkinton, Holliston, and the surrounding areas.


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