Lesson #3: Floss & Fluoride Are Essential for Children’s Healthy Teeth
This is the 3rd in a series of 10 lessons about taking care of kids’ teeth, based on reading what dentists write and our own experiences-plenty of mistakes -as parents of children who didn’t like brushing, and who had many cavities. I wrote this because I wished I’d had this information when our children were little. I hope your children enjoy clean teeth and a bright smile after learning more! Lesson #3…
Once your child has teeth that are touching other teeth, it’s time to start flossing. Floss your child’s teeth each night until they can, and do, floss themselves. In addition to flossing, your child’s teeth need flouride. If the drinking water has fluoride, then that’s great for strengthening their teeth. If your water does not have flouride, check with your dentist about how to address their fluoride needs. A dentist may recommend fluoride tablets or a fluoride treatment. Fluoride treatment for a high-dental-risk child can be very helpful.
An adult should brush a child’s teeth until they are old enough to do a thorough job (ie brushing all their teeth and the tongue, for a full 2 minutes) by themselves, by about age 7. One adage is: If you don’t trust your child to mop your floor then don’t trust him to brush his own teeth. Once they are old enough to brush and floss, they will have learned how to do it well. The next challenge is making the toothbrushing habit stick.
This report gives an overview of American Kids’ Teeth and why it’s still such an important issue. The State of Little Teeth
A motivated brusher will stick to the healthy habit.