Do you need to brush baby’s teeth?

Teeth do not need to be cleaned unless they have erupted. However, it is just as important to clean the gums from approximately 3 months of age. This can be done using a wet face cloth or some gauze, twice a day. Baby teeth begin to erupt from 6-10 months of age, but every child is different – some may erupt earlier, some may erupt later.

From when the child starts teething, they can be given a finger brush or even a wash cloth to chew on to allow them to become familiar with the sensation of having something in their mouth to clean their teeth. While granting the child control of the process, they also clean their teeth at the same time.

Once teeth have started to erupt it is important to enforce good oral hygiene habits early on, to prevent decay in the future. A soft toothbrush is suitable for those under two and is generally recommended to brush the teeth twice a day (once in the morning and once in the evening after their last meal). There are many toothbrushes on the market that offer a variety of colours and patterns, which is more appealing to children. If the baby is uncompliant, again, use a wet face cloth or gauze to wipe each surface of the tooth. To make the tooth brushing process more appealing, singing songs or letting the child play with a toy can distract them or make them feel at ease. A quick attempt at brushing is better than no brushing at all.

Toothpaste is generally not recommended until the child is 12-18 months old, unless advised otherwise. If a toothpaste is to be used, a child-safe, low-dose fluoride toothpaste is recommended. The amount of toothpaste used should be equivalent to the size of a grain of rice, and should not be swallowed.

If you have any concerns about your baby’s teeth please call our friendly team at Coomera Dental Centre 07 5580 4811.