Bullies & Cyber Bullying
Behavior Problems
Classroom-Student Behavior
Extracurricular Activities
Internet & Technology
Kids Health & Safety
Parenting Styles & Skills
Positive Discipline
Potty Training
Sibling Rivalry
Sleepovers & Bedtime

Brushing and Flossing

Your pediatrician may have advised you to begin caring for your child's teeth even before she has any. It's important to clean your infant's gums and continue with regular dental care as teeth begin to sprout. When they get older, it's equally as important that you teach your kids how to brush their teeth and floss. With conscientious dental care and regular dental checkups, your child will enjoy healthy teeth for decades. By the time all your child's teeth have come in (about 2 ½), his dentist will probably recommend fluoride treatments to give extra protection against cavities. Home care is crucial to helping your child maintain healthy teeth.

Parenting tips for keeping good dental health for kids:

  • Brush at least twice a day after meals.
  • Encourage extra brushing after eating foods with lots of sugar
  • Make sure that young children spit out the toothpaste instead of swallowing it.
  • Make sure that your child used only a pea-sized amount of toothpaste.
  • Teach children to floss daily
  • Schedule a dental checkup and cleaning every six months
  • Have dental issues checked out as soon as possible to prevent permanent problems.
  • Set up a fun dental hygiene chart for brushing teeth and flossing. Kids can color in the tooth each time they brush or floss, or you can award points for keeping a regular schedule. Kids can exchange their points for fun things you set up such as a favorite movie, playground time, or something at the store they've wanted.

By the time your child is three, he should be able to manage his own brushing and flossing with supervision. But, even if your child is a master brusher, you're not off the hook. Kids will slack off if given the opportunity. Make sure to stay on top of your child's dental health by helping him develop good oral health habits.