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5 Simple Ways to Show Kids Good Dental Habits

Teaching your child good oral hygiene habits early on can help set them up for long-term dental success. Not only will they learn how to protect their teeth from disease and decay, but they’ll be better set up for the responsibility of more advanced dental or orthodontic care like braces.

How early is “early”? You should begin to brush your baby’s teeth as soon as they appear. As soon as the first tooth comes in — usually at around 6 months of age — brush gently with a soft children’s toothbrush and water, without toothpaste. You could also use a soft wet cloth to wipe over teeth and gums. As more teeth come in, you can begin using an infant-safe toothpaste with a soft toothbrush, and move on to regular toothpaste once they’re able to spit.

Over time, you’ll start showing them how to brush on their own, and by six or seven years old, they should be able to brush their teeth unsupervised. If you’re looking for ways to get them invested in their oral health or make dental hygiene habits more enjoyable, schedule an appointment with a Cabezon Pediatric Dentistry pediatric dentist or try one of these ideas:

1. Peruse your bookshelves.

From Dr. Seuss to the Berenstain Bears, there is an endless supply of children’s books that can teach your little one about their teeth, how to care for them, and how to be brave at the dentist. This is an especially great way to start talking to young children and toddlers about dental health to get them familiar — and comfortable — with the subject.

2. Get creatively engaged.

Making your own toothpaste together at home can be a fun way to get your child engaged in dental hygiene practices and get them excited about brushing their teeth. There are a variety of DIY toothpaste recipes to choose from, but if you’re unsure if an ingredient is safe for your child’s teeth, don’t hesitate to reach out to their dentist.

3. Find ways to make toothbrushing exciting.

Another way to get your child excited about brushing their teeth is with an electric toothbrush. Take them with you to pick out a toothbrush that has their favorite colors, characters, or animals on it. Not only will it make their dental care routine more fun, but there’s also the added benefit of more brushing power for a deeper clean. Electric toothbrushes are also an excellent option for children with special needs or mobility issues who might have difficulties moving a manual toothbrush.

4. Keep it fun with a song.

Playing music can keep your child entertained and their mind occupied for the recommended two minutes of brushing time. You can sing to them, play their favorite song, or come up with your own song to sing. The only right choice is the one your child enjoys most.

5. Find a good children’s dentist.

Routine dentist visits play a vital role in anyone’s dental health, and for children, the dentist they see can make or break their experience. One of the best ways you can find the right dentist for your child is by opting for pediatric dental care. They’ll have a more kid-friendly environment than a general dentist and more experience talking to young patients about their dental care in a way that resonates with them. Remember, kids should have dental exams and cleanings twice a year, so finding a dentist they connect with is a worthwhile investment.

Are you ready to help your child’s smile shine?

When it comes to finding the best dental care for kids, look no further than Cabezon Pediatric Dentistry. We have a skilled team of dentists and professionals with a passion for keeping kids—and their teeth—healthy. And because we believe every child deserves high-quality care, we have a variety of financial options to make that care accessible to your family. Book an appointment today.

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