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When Do I Need to Start Brushing Your Kid’s Teeth?

A young girl brushing her teeth in the bathroom

Dentists recommend brushing at least twice a day to ensure your teeth and gums remain healthy and free of cavities and plaque. However, a recent report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention revealed that 80% of the kids in the U.S. start brushing their teeth later than they should.

Kimberly Giuliano, a pediatrician, commented on the study saying, “What the study found is while the recommendation is for kids to start brushing as soon as they have their first tooth, there were a significant percentage of kids who started brushing much later than that ― some as late as 2 and 3 years old or older.”

If children don’t start brushing at an appropriate time, plaque and tartar start building up on their teeth, leading to cavities. Additionally, a lack of brushing can cause bacteria to develop in the body. These lead to inflammation and disease throughout the body, not just the mouth.

Therefore, it is necessary to start cleaning their teeth as early as possible. In fact, dentists recommend that kids start brushing before their first teeth even erupt. You can take a piece of clean cloth, wrap it around your finger, dip it in water, and gently rub it over your infant’s teeth. Make sure that the water is rich in fluoridated, as it helps prevent cavities.

As soon as four of their baby teeth have grown, get them a toothbrush with soft bristles. Add a small amount of fluoride toothpaste, about the size of a grain of rice, and brush their teeth twice a day.

It is also important to start taking your kid for regular dental appointments. The general recommendation is to start when they turn one or six months after their first baby teeth start to erupt, whichever comes first.

If you live in Summerfield, Oak Ridge, Forest Valley, or Friendly Acres, consider visiting Piedmont Pediatric Dentistry for a consultation now.

Posted on Feb 22, 2021
Image Credit: File ID 105737432 | © Chernetskaya | Dreamstime.com

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