As soon as your baby's first primary teeth appear, they need to be cleaned. For good oral hygiene your child should brush at least twice a day. It is best to teach your child to brush his or her teeth thoroughly as early as possible. For the first brushing of the teeth use an electric or manual toothbrush adapted to the young age. Having the right method of brushing your child's teeth will be the only way to ensure effective brushing.
Here is a guide that includes all the things you need to consider when brushing your child's teeth at any age.
As we all know, baby teeth will eventually fall out. So you may wonder why you should take care of them.
Primary teeth act as a guide for the permanent teeth. They hold the space that the permanent teeth will need to appear in the right place. Poor dental hygiene will cause the baby tooth to fall out earlier than expected due to tooth decay. This means that the permanent teeth will not have enough space and your child will have orthodontic problems as an adult. Untreated cavities in baby teeth will cause pain that will prevent your child from eating and sleeping. Proper brushing of your child's teeth will prevent them from having all these oral hygiene problems.
From an early age, prevent your child from developing periodontal disease. Having impeccable dental hygiene helps to keep the mouth healthy. In addition to protecting teeth and preventing cavities, clean teeth also keep gum disease at bay. To fight dental plaque, it is best to clean your teeth after every meal. Proper brushing of these teeth helps to remove plaque. In addition, regular brushing prevents tartar build-up and tooth erosion, and the right actions are taken.
Toothbrushing according to age
Children can brush their own teeth from the age of 5. Before that, you should help them to get used to brushing their teeth regularly. In order for your child to develop good brushing habits, you should teach them the right reflexes and brushing techniques from the start.
Here are the guidelines to follow according to their age:
- For children from 6 months to 1 year : it is not necessary to use a baby toothbrush. Tooth cleaning is carried out by applying a damp cloth gently to the baby's teeth. To do this, place it around the index finger. You can then rub your baby's teeth very gently to remove the plaque. This is the only way to avoid damaging their teeth, which are particularly fragile.
- From 1 to 2 years old : you should use a soft toothbrush, adapted to the size of the child's mouth. At this age you do not yet need toothpaste to clean your baby's teeth. You should brush lightly once a day, preferably in the evening. Brush back and forth over the tooth surfaces. It is also important to follow the 1-2-3-4 method, i.e. start at the bottom left, then bottom right, then top right and finish at the top left.
- From 2 to 3 years : fluoride toothpaste can be used. This fluoride toothpaste should contain between 250 and 600 ppm. From this age onwards, teeth should be brushed twice a day. You should use the 1-2-3-4 brushing technique, let your child start brushing and then complete it afterwards. It is best to use toothbrushes and appropriate fluoride toothpaste to avoid bleeding.
- 3-6 years : They are able to pick up a brush and know how to brush their teeth. But his dexterity does not allow him to brush effectively. You should apply the 1-2-3-4 method but increase the brushing time to 2 minutes. It is important to brush twice a day using a 500-1000 ppm fluoride toothpaste.
- 6 years and over : They should brush themselves twice a day, in the morning and evening. The French Union for Oral Health suggests using a fluoride toothpaste of between 1000 and 1500 ppm. From this age onwards, the 1-2-3-4 technique is forgotten. Brushing is done from top to bottom separately, in a rotating roll or obliquely in a circular motion.
From the age of 4, you can buy your child a sonic electric toothbrush from the brand Y-Brush. It makes brushing your child's teeth less of a chore because the toothbrush is difficult to hold. In addition, you can simply let the toothbrush guide you through brushing your teeth. In addition, there is a sheet of interchangeable stickers with animals on them to customise the toothbrush. There is also a whale toothpaste applicator in two different colours. Brushing your teeth just got a lot more fun.
Tips for getting your child used to brushing their teeth
Children do not usually enjoy brushing their teeth. They usually see it as a chore that they have to get into the habit of doing. It is therefore important to put in place a set of simple tips that will motivate them to brush their teeth every day.
1) Teach them to brush at a young age
The enamel of baby teeth is much more fragile than that of permanent teeth. It is therefore important that you make brushing your child's teeth a priority from an early age. This is the only way to ensure that your child quickly adopts the right brushing reflexes for good oral hygiene. To do this, you need to get them to start brushing their teeth as soon as their first teeth appear. Brushing should be done as regularly as possible.
2) Let your child choose the toothbrush he or she prefers
Choosing a toothbrush he likes is the only way to get him to want to brush his teeth three times a day. It is therefore important to put aside your own taste and opinion about its appearance. You will find a wide range of toothbrushes on the market that represent these favourite heroes. There are for example electric toothbrushes, luminous toothbrushes or connected toothbrushes, all depending on your desires. You can also opt for interchangeable stickers.
3) Show them how to manage their time with a stopwatch
Children often feel that brushing their teeth takes forever. This is mainly due to the fact that they don't have a sense of time. You can therefore install a stopwatch in the bathroom to give them a cue and motivate them to brush their teeth. Children especially like to imitate their parents. The best solution is to set an example for them by brushing your teeth in front of them with the timer. You can use fun applications while brushing.
Here are some fun apps they can use:
- Ben the Koala : This is an application that will allow the child to mimic the character's gestures at the same time.
- Denny Timer : This is an application that guides the child through the brushing process by indicating the areas to be brushed and that also times the time
- My little toothbrush : This is an app that includes several activities around tooth brushing with a fun game.
We hope this guide has helped you understand what techniques you need to use to brush your child's teeth. As for the tips, you can follow them to the letter regardless of your child's age, as they will in any case teach your child how to maintain good oral hygiene over the long term.