News & Tips from Somerset Dental

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Teaching your young child effective tooth brushing techniques for life

Teaching your young child effective tooth brushing techniques for life

The most important lessons children learn are from their parents, its mimicking their behaviour that teaches them the right and wrong way to behave and act. Teaching correct teeth brushing is an important lesson to teach your child to get it right from the very beginning. If, like many parents, you’re always rushing out the door….shoes, hair, breakfast, bag, jacket, hat, it can be seemingly impossible to slow down and help your child brush their teeth. But it’s important and needs to be done.

From when baby’s first teeth come through, it’s important to be using a soft cloth to be cleaning them, making sure milk residue is not sticking to their teeth. From there a training toothbrush can be introduced to teach your baby to hold and use the toothbrush.

Until your child can properly brush their own teeth, parents should brush their teeth. The correct technique for brushing includes holding your brush at a 45° angle against your child’s teeth/gums and using vertical or circular strokes. Avoid teaching your child horizontal brushing strokes, as these can damage your teeth/gums and wear away enamel.

Your child should brush their teeth for at least two minutes twice a day, however in the rush to get out the door for pre-school or school, this can sometimes be rushed. Try using a favourite song to brush to or there are a range of free iPhone apps which ensure children enjoy brushing their teeth for 2 to 3 minutes.

As your child gets older and more independent, just because they now can brush their teeth doesn’t mean they are. Checking technique and how long they are brushing for is still important and shows that you are still monitoring their brushing habits.

Proper dental care begins young and the habits that are formed can prevent dental complications and orthodontic treatments for older children. The team at Somerset Dental are here to help you teach your children proper dental hygiene. Contact us today and make an appointment with the team.