Age-appropriate dental tools

When it comes to your child’s dental health, it’s important to start early, be consistent and use the right tools.

1: A finger brush or a washcloth helps your baby get used to the feeling and idea of having their mouth cleaned.

2: A silicone brush helps with oral motor sensory development. It’s a fairly easy proposition when babies want to put everything in their mouths. Be sure to use one made specifically for your baby’s age and ability.

3: A soft bristle toothbrush helps remove plaque and keep gums healthy. Avoid the hard, stiff bristles in early childhood.

4: Toothpaste with fluoride helps prevent cavities. This is especially important if your child is at a higher risk of dental caries.

5: Floss picks are great for getting out the stuck bits between teeth and helping your child learn the value of flossing.

6: Electric toothbrushes work well for when your child is ready for more than a soft bristle toothbrush.

7: String floss works best to curve around each tooth. Flossing (not the dance!) takes some practice, but your child will get there with guidance.

8: Mouth rinse is nice for fresh breath when children understand how to spit, and it’s practical for families who do not have fluoridated water.

Adapted from @the.dentistmom on Instagram


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Dr. Erin Estep is a board-certified pediatric dentist who owns Treehouse Kids Dentist in Springfield. She and her staff are committed to making sure your child has an amazing, safe, memorable dental experience.