Cleaning your baby’s teeth

Tooth brush and tooth pasteYour baby’s teeth should be cleaned at least once a day as soon as there is sufficient tooth surface showing.

  • Cradle your baby’s head in your arms in front of you
  • At first you may find it easier to use a piece of clean gauze wrapped around your forefinger
  • Later use a small, soft nylon baby toothbrush
  • Use a small amount of children’s toothpaste and massage it around baby’s gums and teeth
  • Once your toddler shows an interest in trying to clean his own teeth let him have a go, showing him how to brush up and down, rather than from side to side. However, remember that you will need to continue finishing off the brushing process for some years to come, as a child does not have the manual dexterity to clean his teeth thoroughly until he is about seven years old

Fluoride supplements

Fluoride does help strengthen the teeth but too much can cause discolouration of the teeth. Since it is found naturally in some water supplies, it is important to check with your health visitor or dentist if it is necessary to give supplements and how much to give. If needed, supplements can start at about six months of age.

Visiting the dentist

It’s a good idea to take your baby along with you when you have a check up so that he gets used to the surgery. He can be registered with a dentist from six months old, though some dentists don’t carry out check-ups until your child is older and has a good set of teeth.

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