Different Strokes: The Right Brushing Techniques for Children and Adults (Part 1)

If you read this blog regularly, you know that choosing a quality toothpaste is essential in caring for your teeth and gums. Equally important is using the proper technique when brushing your teeth. You might not realize it, but children and adults need to use different brushing methods.

The equipment for brushing in children and adults is similar: both should use toothbrushes with soft bristles, but children need brushes that are small enough to fit their hands and mouths. Everyone should also use fluoridated toothpaste, and only a pea-sized amount (a smaller pea for children), but parents need to use non-fluoridated toothpaste for children under two or children who have not yet learned to spit out the paste.

Once you’ve bought the proper tools, it’s time to begin brushing. Today, we will focus on brushing for children.

You should teach your child the following brushing method (Remember: Supervise brushing for your child until they are about six years old and have achieved the manual dexterity to brush properly):

1.)    Hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against the gumline.

2.)    Use gentle, circular strokes to clean the fronts of top teeth one at a time, and brush away from the gums.

3.)    Use the same circular motion to brush the fronts of bottom teeth and the backs of teeth.

4.)    Use a gentle back-and-forth motion to clean the biting surfaces. Be sure that the bristles get into the crevices and grooves of the teeth

5.)    Lightly brush the tongue to remove bacteria.

6.)    Spit out the toothpaste and rinse the mouth with warm water to remove loose food debris and plaque.

If your child has any two teeth that touch, floss between those teeth after burshing. And floss the sides of all teeth. Flossing removes the bacteria and plaque that brushing can’t reach.

Be sure that your child brushes twice a day, for two or three minutes each time, to thoroughly remove bacteria and ensure that all surfaces of their developing teeth receive a good dose of fluoride. And don’t forget how important it is to schedule dental checkups­­­­­­­­­­­­­­ and cleanings every six months. The American Dental Association recommends that every child start visiting a dentist after their teeth begin to emerge or no later than their first birthday.

Pannu Dental Care provides children’s dentistry and general dentistry to patients in their Cupertino, San Jose, Fremont, and Dublin, CA, locations. Contact the location nearest you today for an appointment.

Leave a comment