As a parent, there are many things you want to teach your child to do — how to get dressed, how to ride a bike, and more. With that in mind, one of the most important things you can teach them while they’re young is the right way to brush their teeth. This skill will promote good oral health and allow them to care for their smile.
At Smile Designers in Longmont, we know that it can be challenging for children to brush their teeth properly, which is why it’s important for you to schedule their bi-annual checkups at our family dental office. If you’re looking for a Top Rated Local® pediatric dentist, call our office today to book your child’s appointment!
1. Make Dental Hygiene Fun
One of the easiest and best ways for children to learn a new skill or task is through play. With that, there are some steps you can take to make the process of caring for their teeth an enjoyable activity.
- Let them pick out their toothbrush — a favorite character or color
- Let them pick a toothpaste with their favorite flavor
- Read books about dental hygiene
- Watch videos that teach kids how to brush their teeth
- Set a timer or play their favorite song as they brush for two minutes
- Find healthy rewards to encourage good oral care
- Plan a fun activity after their visit to the dentist
2. Teeth-Brushing Steps
While you know it’s important for your child to brush their teeth regularly, you may be a bit stumped as to how you should teach them this vital skill. At Smile Designers, we want to make this process as easy as possible for both you and your child, so be sure to follow these steps:
- Hold the toothbrush against the gum line — bottom of the teeth
- Be sure to brush each tooth
- Start at the base of each tooth and brush up to the chewing surface
- Brush the tops of each tooth using short, sweeping motions
- Brush the tongue from back to front
Ideally, you’ll start by brushing your child’s teeth and telling them what you’re doing as you go through each of the steps. Once they’re able to hold the toothbrush on their own, you can repeat the steps and watch them try to do this on their own. With very young children, it’s always a good idea to brush their teeth once more after they’ve done it themselves. Remember, they are still learning, and won’t be able to do as thorough of a job as you can.
3. Make Flossing Part of the Routine
You can either use traditional string floss or a child’s size flosser. If you’re using traditional floss, show your child how to twirl the floss around each finger to control it and then gently slip it around the side of each tooth along the top and bottom of their mouth. Show them how to use a new piece of floss for each tooth so they don’t reinsert plaque or food to another part of their mouth.