Unfortunately, not every kid loves having their teeth cleaned. When your child is teething and their gums are sore and tender, they are especially resistant.
Some tips to try if brushing time becomes a struggle:
Take it easy.
Children’s gums are very sensitive, even when they are not teething. Try using a soft washcloth for cleaning, and always ensure gentle touching.
For some, a little distraction might help to make them more receptive to tooth brushing. You may even try singing a favorite tune while cleaning the teeth to calm him down.
Seeing mom or dad brushing and having fun, helps make a game out of tooth brushing time. Mom or dad goes first, and the child would feel more comfortable to follow.
Your kid will be curious about the tooth brush or finger brush. Encourage their interest by allowing them to hold the brush and examine it at their own pace. You will notice that they may even end up putting the brush in their mouths – all by themselves!
Make brushing time enjoyable.
To set your child up for a lifetime of good dental habits and healthy teeth, make it fun and interactive for them. The design of the tooth brush also plays a big factor. Colorful silicone finger brushes are good to use when transitioning the child from using washcloths to a tooth brush.
The massaging action helps to soothe irritated gums once teething starts. You’ll know when your kid is ready to brush by himself when he starts grabbing for the tooth brush.
About The Writer
DR. JOYCELYN FRANCES ESGUERRA, Dentist
Dr. is the dental and oral healthcare expert of Wyeth Nutrition parenTeam. Having run a private clinic for more than 20 years now, Dr. Joycelyn Esguerra has developed an expertise in orthodontics, TMJ orthopedics, cosmetic dentistry, and biological dentistry. As a dentist, her work has included educating patients on oral care, assessing teeth and diagnosing patients' dental conditions, evaluating treatment options and providing treatment plans to patients, and carrying out clinical treatments such as restoring teeth affected by decay and treating gum disease.
Dr. Esguerra received her degree of Doctor of Dental of Medicine from the College of Dentistry at the University of the East in Manila. She also completed a 6-month long comprehensive preceptorship program on Functional Jaw Orthopedics and TMJ Dentistry at the TMJ Integrative Dentistry Academy of the Philippines.
An active member of the medical community, she has served the Mandaluyong City Dental Chapter in various roles, including President, Executive Vice President, and Board of Director. Dr. Esguerra is also part of the Philippine Dental Association (PDA) and the TMJ Integrative Academy of the Philippines.
The views and opinions expressed by the writer are his/her own, and does not state or reflect those of Wyeth Nutrition and its principals.