A child’s dental health care needs a lot of thought and consideration. Children are not quite as easy as adults in this regard. While it can feel like you’re pushing a huge rock uphill just to get your children to brush their teeth, choosing the right dental products can help even the odds. With the best equipment and product, you can even get them to feel excited about the whole routine—well, at least, for a couple of days.
As soon as your child’s first tooth pops up, you need to make them practice proper oral hygiene. Just because they’re little does not mean they are exempt from the dangers of plaque, cavities, and other teeth and gum problems. You are probably going to start wondering about which toothbrush to use and what toothpaste to buy by this time.
Fortunately, it’s not such a big deal with the right knowledge. Kids must have their dental health care routine down when they are still young to avoid or prevent dental problems. Inducing them to do it right is the key. Here are some of the best dental products for children to help you get them brushing their teeth properly.
To Fluoride or not to Fluoride
Fluoride is one of the essential minerals for our teeth. It has been recently discovered that they are even more critical for a child’s teeth than an adult’s. Fluoride helps build tooth enamel which helps strengthen teeth. Without it, your kid is going to grow up with sensitive and weak teeth. Thus, the American Dental Association (ADA) recommends that parents use a tiny amount of toothpaste (as small as a rice grain) on their child’s teeth the moment it first comes out.
Before giving them fluoride toothpaste, parents and caregivers used to wait until their children were at least six years old. This is because children don’t have much in the way of spit/swallow reflex, and fluoride toothpaste should definitely not be swallowed. Nowadays, however, dental experts suggest the opposite. This recommendation is based published review in the Journal of the American Dental Association—the study assessed the effectiveness and safety of fluoride on children six years old and below.
The study has shown that around 25 percent of children have or had cavities before entering kindergarten. This is why it is essential to use a tiny amount of fluoride toothpaste to help prevent the development of cavities. Helen Ristic, the author of the scientific review, found that brushing a child’s teeth with rice grain-sized fluoride toothpaste can help prevent tooth decay and cavities. The ingestion of more than that, however, can lead to dental fluorosis. Furthermore, according to her, dentists should give patients advice using oral description, visual aids and actual demonstration to help ensure that only the appropriate amount of toothpaste is used.
The right equipment
Kids are the world’s pickiest people. If they don’t like the taste of their toothpaste or the look of their toothbrush, they’re probably going to refuse to brush their teeth. If you’re not creative, tantrums are going to be thrown after every meal. This is why you need to make it fun, engaging, and easy. All these will help your child get the routine down until dental and oral health care becomes second nature to them.
But what is the right equipment? Let’s find out.
Toothbrushes for kids should be soft-bristled for comfort and efficiency. It should also be fun and engaging, especially since they’re for kids. There are so many products that offer these things nowadays. There are even toothbrushes that come with a holder that looks like a fun cartoon that your kid could love. The holders sometimes even encourage the kids to brush using the correct technique.
If you want your kids to use power brushes, you can find a lot of fun-looking ones. After all, most studies discuss how power brushes do a better job removing plaque biofilm than manual brushing. Just make sure to choose the one that best fits the needs of your child. You can have your kids pick out the design. Then, to encourage independence, you can have them brush their teeth on their own while you monitor from your smartphone. See, when you connect the toothbrush to your phone, it shows you where your kid missed a spot.
If you can, try to brush alongside them, so they’ll know you both need to do it. You can even find a fund two-minute song to listen to, so they’ll know how long they should tend to their teeth.
Children who floss on a regular basis have better oral health than those who do not. However, flossing can be a lot more complicated than brushing, especially with kids. They’re probably going to ask you why they need to do it when they’ve already brushed their teeth and so on. You will need patience. But patience will not get your kid flossing on his own. This is why you need to look for fun and engaging floss that can help your kids develop a liking to it at most, a tolerance for it, as least.
There are so many products to choose from in the market that can give you what you need. One example is the gum-chucks floss. This product comes in the form of a game with miniature nunchuck characters, trading cards and challenges. If you play it right, your kid will want to floss more than you do.
Regular mouthwash isn’t delicious. If you want to get your kid to use one, however, you need to find one that at least tastes better than the regular one. For mouthwash to work, they need fluoride, which means you have to remind the kids repeatedly not to swallow it. There are products with a delicious bubblegum and strawberry flavor that are alcohol-free. Since dentists usually recommend the use of fluoride rinse for kids aged six and above, these kinds of products are best for you. Furthermore, dentists recommend that kids follow this oral hygiene routine—brush, floss and rinse, which makes mouthwash a definite must-have.