How to pick the right toothbrush for your child

Tips on finding the right toothbrush for your child

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Once your child's first baby tooth has erupted, it’s recommended to start brushing the tooth/teeth with soft gauze or a specially designed rubber finger toothbrush. From 1-year-old or older, you can use a toothbrush to brush your child’s teeth. It is important to brush your child’s teeth at least twice a day - after breakfast and before bedtime. Things you should consider are:

Size
The best toothbrush for your child should allow your child to reach all the surfaces of the teeth! It should be able to clean the cheek surface and the tongue surface of all teeth, especially at the back of the mouth. A small toothbrush head is the best for this. Usually children’s toothbrushes have age ranges on them to assist with toothbrush selection.

Handles
Many different handles are available today such as straight, angled, and curved.The most important handle for your child is one that they can hold comfortably and brush well for two to three minutes. A toothbrush with a rubber grip may make it easier for your child to hold.

Bristles
Generally, dentists recommend extra soft or soft nylon bristles with round ends. No sharp or jagged edges should be present on the toothbrush as they may cause damage to the teeth or gums.

Electric or manual?
If your child has difficulty using a manual toothbrush, go electric. Electric toothbrushes can decrease plaque and gum disease, in particular, rotating electric toothbrushes. Some have built-in timers that sound if you have brushed your teeth long enough to remove plaque from your teeth. One of the disadvantages of electric toothbrushes include a higher cost so if your oral hygiene is good enough with a manual toothbrush, a manual toothbrush is sufficient. Its disadvantage, however, is that people are more likely to brush too hard and cause damage to your gums and teeth.

When to replace?
Toothbrushes should be replaced approximately every three to four months or more often if the bristles become matted or frayed.
Finally, take your children to see a dentist on a regular basis. Most children need dental checkups at least twice a year.


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