The Importance of Brushing and Flossing
Does your child brush and floss regularly? Some of our patients – both the adults and the little ones, too! – Are surprised to learn that children do need to be careful to brush and floss regularly.
There is a common misunderstanding that just because a child’s baby teeth are going to be replaced in a few short years by their permanent teeth, that maybe it is not as important to take care of them. That could not be further than the truth! Having a healthy smile at a young age is very important, as it can help your child grow up with a healthy smile as an adult, too. Even if your child has already gotten his or her permanent teeth, we here at Great Grins for KIDS - Portland strongly believe they need to continue to brush and floss to help prevent many different problems that could arise from poor oral hygiene.
Why Your Child Needs to Brush and Floss
Your child’s teeth need to be brushed and flossed regularly, just like you would brush and floss your teeth. Not only can a good oral hygiene regimen help keep your child’s teeth healthy and free from tooth decay, but it can also help ensure that they have healthy gums, too. Teaching your child how to take good care of their teeth can help save them from cavities and toothaches.
Baby teeth have a direct role in the health of their permanent, adult teeth, too. For instance, if your child develops tooth decay in their baby teeth, these cavities can affect their adult teeth. If the decay spreads up into the tooth roots, it can damage the adult tooth hiding there. If the tooth decay gets so bad that the tooth is lost, the adult teeth could come in unevenly or crookedly. This can lead to uneven gaps and spaces or overcrowding.
How to Brush and Floss Correctly
It is very important that you spend time with your child to teach them how to brush and floss properly. Little children need to be carefully supervised to help make sure they are brushing properly and not accidentally swallowing toothpaste, but older children do not need to be watched as closely.
To help make brushing and flossing more fun, you can let your child pick out their toothbrush and floss at the stores. Superheroes and cartoon characters can be motivating when it comes time to take care of their teeth! Start with a soft-bristled toothbrush and have them gently brush at a 45-degree angle to their gums. Make sure they brush two minutes each time they brush, both morning and night.
To floss properly, you will want to start with an 18-inch piece of dental floss. Teach them how to work the floss between their teeth and up underneath their gums to remove anything that may be trapped there. Make sure they use a clean piece of floss on each tooth, so they do not spread germs around.
If you would like to talk to us more about the benefits of brushing and flossing, or you are ready to set up an appointment with us here at Great Grins for KIDS - Portland for your child, please give us a call today at (971) 470-0054!