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Toothbrushing For Children

Steven Polevoy

Children should start good oral hygiene at the earliest. Parents of infants should cleanse their young's mouth with a clean cloth after meals, and before going to bed. Unlike adults, children require a different way of brushing their teeth. The child's toothbrush should be soft and they should only use pea-sized toothpaste, making sure they don't swallow too much. Ingestion of too much fluoride causes flourosis, which is the development of white speckles on the teeth. It is important for parents to know that they have to wait until the child reaches 2 years until they use fluoride toothpaste.

Flouride vs Non-Flouride Toothpaste

Fluoride is a fluorine ion, which is a gas, and if bonded with other substance, compounds are formed such as calcium fluoride. Fluoride, in relation to health, is not essential to humans. But, in relation to oral hygiene, it has been widely known that it acts as enzyme inhibitor.

Fluoride is not the main ingredient in toothpastes that cleanse your teeth. In fact, the Calcium Carbonate does most of the cleansing. The main role of Fluoride is only to eliminate the bacteria that produce cavities. The non-Fluoride Toothpaste, from the name itself, does not contain fluoride. It is advisable for children below 2 years of age since they have high chances of swallowing the toothpaste. Although this doesn't have fluoride, it is still important to check the label and know what is in it.

Adult Supervision

Tooth brushing for children should be supervised by an adult especially when they are still under the age of eight years, or up to the time that they are able to dress themselves completely. As with adults, used toothbrushes must be replaced with a new one every three months.

Due to the marked self-determination of a child, here are some tips that can make tooth brushing less of a battle:

1. Agree to let your child brush teeth with you. 2. Let them pick out their own toothbrush. 3. Allow them to choose which toothbrush they want to use. 4. Give them the freedom to brush their own teeth first before supervising them to do so.

It is also a good idea to put tooth charts in the bathroom that both the child and parent can check during tooth brushing. This enables them to understand what they are trying to accomplish. Your dentist should be the primary source of information about dental care for your child. Whether it is your family dentist or a pedodontist, they should be able to answer any questions you may have. teeth.

About the Author

Dr. Steven Polevoy is a family dentist with over 10 years of experience. Visit his team at the Gentle Touch Dentistry located in Harrison, NY. For more information about their services, visit Dentist & Dental Westchester.

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  • Last modified: Sat, 21 Jan 2012 19:17:49 GMT

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