One of the most important things you can do to help your child achieve a healthy smile is to teach them how to brush and floss properly. Good oral hygiene habits do more than anything else to keep the mouth free from tooth decay, disease, and other oral problems. When you bring your child to Pediatric Dentistry South, our pediatric dentists will review their oral hygiene routines, make recommendations on how these routines can be improved, and provide demonstrations to help them learn the correct ways to brush and floss.

Your child should brush their teeth at least twice a day, or after every meal. We recommend using a soft-bristled toothbrush and an ADA-approved toothpaste. We also advise that you brush your child’s teeth for them until about age 7, when their motor skills have developed enough that they can do it effectively themselves. Children should use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. You may want to consider purchasing an electric toothbrush.

If your infant has not yet developed teeth, you can help them keep their mouth clean by gently wiping down the gums with a clean, moist cloth. After their teeth begin to erupt, begin gently brushing the teeth. Use only a very small amount of toothpaste.

Children should begin flossing as soon as they have two adjacent teeth. They should floss daily, as this will clean above and below the gum line, disrupting colonies of bacteria and preventing plaque from forming. If your child cannot hold dental floss, try using a floss holder instead.

For more information about oral hygiene and proper brushing and flossing techniques, please call our practice today at 412-257-1150. We will be happy to help you schedule your child’s appointment with Drs. Richard Ruffalo, Molly Lanz, Priyanka Vaddi, and Courtney Uselton in Pittsburgh, Imperial, and McMurray, Pennsylvania.