Tips For Helping A Young Child With Flossing And Brushing

If you have a young child, chances are that they won't be brushing or flossing effectively on their own. This means you need to step in and help them do it to ensure that their mouth is staying clean. Here are some tips to follow when you're the one doing the actual brushing for your kid.

Use The Correct Toothbrush

You may have extra toothbrushes around your home, but you shouldn't have your child use these if they are made for adults. That's because adult brushes are often too big and make it difficult to use on the small teeth of a child. Try switching to kids toothbrush that has soft bristles that will be gentle on their gums.

Use The Correct Toothpaste

It is a good idea to use a kids friendly toothpaste that doesn't contain fluoride. This is due to kids sometimes swallowing toothpaste by accident, and it will be safer to not use those fluoride toothpastes. The fluoride may be good for their teeth when brushing, but if swallowed the fluoride can actually hinder the development of their teeth.

Use Circular Motions

When using the toothbrush, you'll want to move it around in a circular motion. This will help the brushing be more effective by overlapping the brush with the teeth and gums. If you brush in a simple back and forth motion, it is likely that you won't move the brush far down enough for it to be considered effective brushing.

Use Floss Picks

It's difficult to floss between someone else's teeth when you are wrapping floss around your finger. Consider buying some dental floss picks from your local drug store to make flossing easier. The floss is suspended between two points on a plastic pick, and can help you rub the floss between the teeth in a much easier way.

Use Fun Aids

Anything that you can do to make brushing more fun for your kid is going to help them look forward to brushing. Consider getting a toothbrush with a fun character on it and using a fun timer to make sure they are brushing long enough. You can use a short two-minute song that is part of your brushing ritual or try downloading an app on your smartphone that acts as a two minute tooth brushing timer.

For some more tips, reach out to your family dentist about what else you could be doing.