Brushing Up on Children’s Oral Care

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Even though children eventually lose their baby teeth, proper pediatric oral care can influence your child’s well-being into adulthood. There are many decisions to make when raising children. We always want to choose the best for them, and selecting a toothbrush and toothpaste are no different. We’ve provided some tips below to help you with these decisions.

Choosing the Right Toothbrush
When it comes to toothbrushes, you’ll want to be mindful of bristle strength. Hard bristles are not appropriate for tiny mouths and their soft, delicate gum tissue. (Hard bristles aren’t really ideal for most adults, either.) Since children are new to tooth-brushing, they should always use toothbrushes with soft bristles.

Brushing your teeth too vigorously can damage your gums, root surface, and even the enamel that protects your teeth, so be sure to teach your child to brush gently, as well. You can protect your teeth even further by using toothbrushes whose bristles have rounded tips.

Speaking of tiny mouths, be careful to select a toothbrush that’s not too large to comfortably fit inside your child’s mouth. If a toothbrush is too big, then your little one won’t be able to reach those often neglected back teeth. If you want your child to adopt good dental care habits, be sure it’s not an uncomfortable experience, or they won’t want to brush.

Remember that there are different shapes for toothbrushes, so a rounded head may be a better fit than a rectangular-shaped toothbrush.

Children can be tough on just about everything, and their tendency to inflict excessive wear and tear on their toothbrushes follows suit. Flared bristles are a sure sign that your child needs a new toothbrush. Depending on the child, this could mean replacing a toothbrush every one to three months. And be sure to replace your young one’s toothbrush after an illness, as well.

Choosing the Right Toothpaste
Believe it or not, your primary consideration for choosing the right toothpaste is simply choosing a flavor that your child likes! Once again, you don’t want anything to inhibit your child’s desire to brush, so avoid buying any “yucky” or “hot” toothpaste flavors!

Even toothpaste that’s specifically made for children should not be swallowed, because the idea is to teach your children good habits. But it is perhaps inevitable that a child will swallow some toothpaste, so be sure to choose toothpaste that contains as little fluoride as possible.

For instance, the low end of the spectrum is one-tenth of one percent, which is ideal for kids. Fluoride is good for teeth but not so good for the body if swallowed. And remember to teach your child that only a pea-sized dollop of toothpaste is necessary for cleaning teeth.

Choosing the right toothbrush and toothpaste will go a long way toward helping your little one enjoy happy and healthy pediatric oral care.