Cleaning Your Child’s Teeth

Until the age of about 8 years old, children must be helped by parents to clean their teeth properly. The dexterity needed to brush their teeth is about the same as the ability to write or print their name properly.

Even before your child has teeth you may want to clean their mouth and gums with a damp washcloth. This will get you and the child use to the routine. Don’t use toothpaste until the child has teeth.

To brush your babies teeth and gums, lie your baby in a comfortable position like on your lap so that you can see into their mouth.

Brushing Teeth

Point the bristles to where the gums and teeth meet

Children of about 3 years of age will generally become more cooperative with the brushing routine . Your child may want to be doing it themselves. Parents should be participating by completing the brushing process.

Use a small kids toothbrush with soft bristles to avoid hurting your child’s teeth and gums. You may use a toothpaste that has fluoride, only use a pea size amount and get your child to spit after brushing.

Use gentle circles motion to brush every surface of the teeth and part of the gum. You can hurt the gums by brushing too hard so it is important to remain patient and gentle.

Hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to the teeth.


As the child develop contact between their teeth, parents should start to floss between the contact points. The use of floss picks will be easier to use.

You may brush your child teeth twice a day. To brush before bedtime is very important as the germs and bacteria that use sugar to make cavities will be active all night.

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