Oral Hygiene and Children
Kids are often not taught how to take care of their teeth. We hae a few instructions we like to provide for parents to help with their kids oral health.
Step One – Brushing:
- Tooth brushing should be performed twice daily for any child who has a tooth, after breakfast and after the evening meal. It should take at least one minute if done thoroughly.
- Young babies may also have their gums/teeth wiped with a soft cloth after feeding. This teaches them to accept the cleaning process.
- Older children may expect to have their teeth cleaned in the bathroom, but a young child may be easier to manage when lying on a bed or the floor. Don’t be surprised if, in a strong-minded toddler, the process involves a certain amount of restraint. (The TV can help as a distraction).
- Flossing should begin as soon as your child has two teeth that touch together. These are most commonly at the back (between the two big molars) but front teeth should also be flossed if they contact. It is where teeth touch each other that plaque is retained and where cavities in the sides of teeth begin.
- Although flossing is time consuming at first, you will become very quick with practice and flossing can reduce the chance of cavities forming between the teeth by 30%, so it is very worthwhile.
- Floss handles are really helpful if you have large fingers (or to see what you are doing).
- Brush the cheek and tongue sides of all teeth at the gum line in small circles.
Brush one arch of teeth at a time moving left to right outside and coming back right to left, inside.
Step Two – Flossing:
- The floss should be zigzagged between the contacts, never ‘snap’ it down onto the gum; it hurts.
- Curve the floss forward and back to clean the sides, one contact point at a time.
We can help provide a number of preventative treatments to reduce your child’s risk of dental disease, and guidance as to their future needs. Prevention of any problems at this stage is the best indicator for future dental health. Find out more about what we provide for children above.