Montessori Parenting: When to Start Brushing Baby Teeth

when to start brushing baby teeth

Parent wants to provide their kid with the best possible care. Brushing baby teeth is one of the ways parents can help their children grow up with healthy, strong teeth and a bright smile. A child’s success in brushing their teeth depends on knowing where to start and what to do.

Every parent should know the most important thing is no right or wrong way to brush a baby’s teeth. There is only one way that works best for you. Your child’s mouth and habits will change as they age, so parents need to recognize this and know how long it will take for their babies’ teeth to grow to keep dental health at its optimum. This means your baby may need the same or different amount of toothbrushing than your older children. 

Are you wondering what age to start brushing your baby’s teeth? Read on to find out when the best time is to teach your child the proper habits to have healthy teeth for life.

What Are Baby Teeth Made of?

Baby teeth, also called primary teeth, are the first teeth to grow in a child’s mouth. Primary teeth appear around six months of age and are fully in place by three years. Familiarize yourself with your child’s primary teeth so you’ll know what to expect as they erupt.

Primary teeth are made up of two main layers: an outer layer called enamel and an inner layer called dentin. The enamel makes up most of the tooth and serves as a protective barrier for the sensitive dentin underneath. Dentin is the tooth tissue that hardens with age, enabling permanent teeth to develop.

Why It’s Not Too Early to Start Brushing Baby Teeth?

when to start brushing baby teeth

Baby teeth serve as the foundation for adult teeth. They are more at risk of cavities and decay than adult teeth because they have a softer enamel, the outermost tooth layer. Good dental hygiene is essential for your baby’s overall health, so starting early is best.

Teaching dental care early on can prevent tooth decay and other issues. Brushing baby teeth daily will help prevent tooth decay and gum disease in later life.

The key to achieving optimal outcomes with your child’s teeth while developing is to make it a habit. It’s important to develop routines so that your child knows how to brush their teeth on his own with ease.

When Should I Start Brushing My Baby’s Teeth?

As soon as your baby’s first tooth erupts, you should begin brushing their teeth. To be safe, the American Academy of Pediatricians recommends waiting until their first birthday to start tooth brushing. By this time, babies typically have at least two teeth and can sit up by themselves.

Once your baby can independently sit up and hold their head up, you may proceed to learn how to brush their teeth. You must remain gentle with them when teaching kids how to brush their teeth for the first few times because they may not know what they are doing yet! The best thing about teaching your child how to brush their teeth early on will become second nature once they get older!

You must use appropriate techniques while brushing your child’s teeth to prevent gums injury, remove plaque, and cause other problems. It is vital to be gentle when brushing your baby’s teeth because the gums are very soft.

What Are the Benefits of Brushing Baby Teeth?

Your baby will experience several benefits from brushing their primary teeth. Since their teeth are not calcified, babies and toddlers should use a soft toothbrush. It’s readily washable or replaceable. Not to mention, a soft toothbrush will reduce your baby’s risk of gum and mouth injuries. Here are some other advantages of brushing your baby’s teeth.

  1. Prevent cavities and tooth decay: While your baby’s teeth are growing, you’ll want to help them develop healthy habits. Brushing is the most effective approach to plaque and bacteria that cause tooth decay.
  2. Promotes gum health: Brushing teeth and flossing are beneficial for a child’s gums. When you clean between your child’s teeth, the gums will become healthier, and it will be easier to brush them as your little one gets older.
  3. Teach proper dental care: Brushing a child’s teeth may help them get used to caring for their teeth and establish healthy oral hygiene practices.
  4. Encourages independence: Since children learn best by imitating, you’ll want to teach them how to brush their teeth. Teaching a child while they are young will assist them in making it a daily practice as adults,

What Kind of Toothbrush and Toothpaste Should I Use for Babies?

toothbrush for babies

Your child will be able to use a toothbrush when they can spit out food and drink without choking. The American Academy of Pediatricians recommends using a soft toothbrush when brushing your baby’s teeth. Soft toothbrushes will not harm your baby’s gums, and they may be used as soon as they can sit up on their own.

While you’re at it, it’s important to use an appropriate amount of toothpaste for your child. Avoid using too much toothpaste because that may irritate their gums, causing irritation or inflammation.

It is essential to choose the appropriate toothpaste for your child’s age:

  • Babies: A small amount of smooth-tasting, non-saline toothpaste is best for babies because too much regular toothpaste can irritate their gums. Choose a toothpaste that has fluoride and another ingredient such as baking soda or xylitol to prevent cavities from forming. It’s best to use a small toothbrush to fit your baby’s mouth.
  • Toddlers: Toothpaste for toddlers should be offered in a liquid or gel format. Use a tiny bit of toothpaste, but make sure it’s thick and creamy. Mix the paste in your palm using the tip of your finger. Avoid using plastic cups and squeeze bottles.

How Do I Get My Child to Brush Their Teeth?

There are many ways to encourage your child to brush their teeth. The most significant thing to keep in mind is that this is a game! Try these ideas:

1. Sing Together

when to start brushing baby teeth

You can sing the alphabet song or any other songs that make brushing fun for both of you. Your goal is to have fun and not worry about whether your child brushes their teeth.

2. Play Horse With The Toothbrush (Or Pretend It’s A Lollipop).

Use a toothbrush that your child likes, whether shaped like a car, bicycle, or other fun features. Alternatively, you can pretend that the toothbrush is a lollipop to make it more appealing.

3. Use A Timer And Reward System

Introduce a timer that lets your child know when their time is up. Let them know that they can stop brushing whenever they stop the timer. When you first start, have your child brush for just a few seconds, and be sure to stop the timer. Your goal is to make it enjoyable for your child and show that you are having fun.

4. Give Them A Toothpaste With A Favorite Flavor

Experiment with different toothpaste flavors until you find the right one for your child. When your child like toothpaste, they will be more willing to brush their teeth.

5. Play Games

There are many fun ways to entertain your child and make brushing more enjoyable. You can use different objects to make a track to get the toothbrush from one side to the other. The game does not have to be difficult, but it must be enjoyable for your child.

Brushing Tips For Babies and Toddlers

As a parent, you will have to brush your child’s teeth multiple times each day. When it comes to brushing your baby’s teeth, there are a few things that you should know.

Baby’s teeth are susceptible; therefore, it is important to brush gently and be careful not to damage their gums. Here are a few tips on how to properly brush your baby’s teeth:

  • Choose the right size: Choose a small toothbrush to fit your baby’s mouth. It is too big if you have to force the toothbrush into your baby’s mouth.
  • Use short strokes: Begin brushing on one side of the jaw and move in short, gentle strokes while tapping the back of the teeth before repeating on the other side. You should not be scrubbing their teeth vigorously or dragging your finger faster than their gums can close around it.
  • Start when your baby can sit up: Begin brushing your baby’s teeth as soon as they can sit up by themselves. Start with a small amount of toothpaste and work your way up to more toothpaste as they get older.
  • Tilt the head of the brush: You should tilt the head of the toothbrush so that it does not rest in their mouth when you are brushing.
  • Use a small amount of toothpaste: You should use a small amount of toothpaste on the brush and tilt their head so that the toothpaste goes as far back into their mouth as possible. Then, you should wait a few minutes and then brush again. 

Preventing Cavities

toddler cries from toothache

As a parent, you should be able to recognize when your child has a cavity. When you do, take care of the problem to prevent it from worsening. Proper dental hygiene is key in preventing cavities in children.  

Cavities are small holes in the tooth that lead to infection and painful abscesses. The cavities often form in babies where the teeth meet the gum line. By taking care of your children’s dental hygiene, you will be helping them to prevent cavities from forming in the first place.

It doesn’t always have to be difficult to prevent cavities. You can stop cavities from developing by brushing, flossing, and using fluoride toothpaste.

The Takeaway

It is recommended to get your child involved in their dental hygiene routine early. When you can do this, you will have a better relationship with your child, and they will learn that it’s important to take care of their teeth so that they remain healthy.

We at Montessori Academy take the dental health of our children very seriously. We begin early on in the curriculum to educate the children about proper oral care, dental hygiene, and the importance of good oral health. We also teach them to appreciate the benefits of a healthy mouth early on.

Our students learn about the safe and effective ways to take care of their teeth early. They know how to brush and floss properly and keep their teeth healthy. We ensure that our students thoroughly understand the importance of good dental hygiene and identify ways to implement these habits into their daily lives.

In addition to teaching oral hygiene skills, we also provide ample opportunities for our students to practice these skills. We assist them in brushing their teeth properly, flossing, and using mouthwash regularly.

If you have any questions about our dental hygiene program at Montessori Academy, don’t hesitate to contact us.


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