Tooth brushing is a vital element of health for all children. Children need to be taught both good brushing habits and proper tooth brushing techniques. Failure to instill this discipline during a childs formative years can instill negligence in the mind that will follow that person into adolescence and adulthood. Proactive parents are encouraged to supervise their children as they are brushing their teeth to ensure they are doing it for long enough periods of time and in following the proper techniques.
There are four things that constitute proper tooth brushing for children. Children should brush their teeth at least two times a day, but it is better to have them brush three times a day after breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
The type of toothbrush matters.
Children should always use a soft bristle brush. Medium and hard bristle brushes should never be used. Believe it or not, a soft toothbrush does a much better job of removing plaque below the gumline. This is of vital importance to a childs heath, because plaque below the gumline is one of the major contributors to rampant cavity formation in young children.
Medium bristle and hard bristle toothbrushes lack the flexibility necessary to reach under the gum to clean plaque off teeth. They also have a tendency to cut the gums.
Children should brush with fluoride toothpaste.
Fluoride hardens tooth enamel and makes it more resistant to tooth decay. It has also been known to stop a cavity that is in the process of forming, thus making it easier to repair the tooth with cosmetic dental bonding (we do not recommend silver amalgam fillings for children.)
However, fluoride toothpaste should never be swallowed, so teach this to your children and store the toothpaste out of reach until they are self-disciplined and old enough to understand the dangers of fluoride toxicity.
The angle at which children brush their teeth is also very important.
The toothbrush should be tilted so that the tip brushes the backs of the front teeth. This is because the insides of the teeth get less attention. It is best for children to begin by brushing the insides of the upper teeth, then move to the insides of the lower teeth.
It is important for children to brush their teeth in a specific pattern.
Whatever teeth the child begins with, it is important that he or she follow the same pattern each day to make sure all tooth surfaces are cleaned. After the insides of the teeth are cleaned, children should move next to the outsides of the upper teeth, then to the lower teeth.
Children also should be reminded to gently brush their tongues and the roofs of their mouths. As odd as this may seem, it is actually very hygienic because it removes the same germs that cause plaque buildup and bad breath.
Our experience in the pediatric dentistry field has also taught us that children consider it even more fun sometimes to brush their tongues as they do to brush their teeth!
Cosmetic implant dentistry is a specialized field that requires extensive knowledge and experience to be done correctly. The Medical Center Dental Group in Houston, Texas brings all of that and more to the direct benefit of each and every patient we treat. Although we are located in the world famous Houston Medical Center at Scurlock Towers, we routinely see dental patients who travel from Austin, San Antonio, Dallas, Beaumont and Midland Texas to see Dr. Dale Brant, Dr. Charles Campbell or Dr. Elizabeth OSullivan-Winslow for their cosmetic denistry services.
Make an appointment with the dentists at the Medical Center Dental Group. Give us a call toll free at 1. 888.790.0309, or or feel free to Ask the Dentist.