When should I start brushing my child’s teeth?

    Once your child’s teeth begin erupting, you can begin cleaning them by wiping them with a moist washcloth. As your child gets more teeth, you can begin to use a soft child’s toothbrush. You should use just a pea-size amount of a fluoride toothpaste or a non-fluoride toothpaste (like Baby OraGel) until your child is able to spit it out (too much fluoride can stain their teeth).

    For most toddlers, getting them to brush their teeth can be quite a challenge.

    Some suggestions for making tooth brushing less of a battle can include:

    • letting him brush your teeth at the same time
    • letting him pick out a few toothbrushes with his favorite characters and giving him a choice of which one he wants to use each time (this will give him some feeling of control over the situation)
    • let him brush his own teeth first (you will likely have to “help out”).
    • read some children’s books about tooth brushing.
    • Or have everyone brush their teeth at the same time.

    To help him understand the importance of brushing, it can be sometimes fun and helpful to let him eat or drink something that will ‘stain’ his teeth temporarily, and then let him brush them clean. It can also be a good idea to create a “tooth brushing routine” and stick to the same routine each day.