Growing up with your kids teaches you a lot of things. In older times, when most of the Indian families lived in a combined family, usually the elders used to educate our kids. Living in a nuclear family can be very challenging when it comes to the important decisions regarding your child’s growth. How to brush your baby’s teeth, is one of the many necessary issues.
When Kaira’s teething started she used to get a little cranky and tried to chew upon anything that came in her hand. We gave her teether (kept in a refrigerator) to help soothe her gums. Brushing of baby’s teeth can be divided into two parts, based on age:
Before teething (o-1 year)
Oral health is necessary even when there are no teeth. The cleanliness of gums is equally important. When the baby is fed on breastmilk, gums are prone to bacteria attack. These bacterial may result is serious oral problems if not cleaned. But baby gum is very soft and I don’t recommend using a toothbrush. I used moistened soft clean cotton cloth to rub against the gums. You can also use a piece of gauze.
Another recommended product that I used was a finger brush. A baby finger brush is a convenient finger-shaped brush that can fit in your finger for easy access inside the baby’s mouth. It is made of BPA free super-soft silicone materials and has soft bristles that are very gentle on gums. Do not use any kind of toothpaste at this stage. Just rinse with warm clean water. For cleaning of the tongue, there are small dots provided at the back of the finger brush
After teething (1 year +)
Generally, baby teething happens after the first birthday of the infant. First of all, you can see those cute little bunny teeth. Eventually, between age 1- years, you can see two rows of baby teeth. It is high time you shift from a finger brush to a soft baby toothbrush. It has soft bristles too and has a slightly tapered head, designed for easy reach inside the baby’s mouth. You can use baby toothpaste at this stage. I have been using Chicco’s baby toothpaste and highly recommend it. It is a baby-friendly toothpaste with no fluoride and preservatives.
Use a tongue cleaner for cleaning the inside of the mouth. Start with a tender tongue cleaner. It is gentle and helps to remove thrush, milk residue, that gets deposited in your baby’s mouth. Eventually, shift to another variant of a tender tongue cleaner that has soft scrapers on it.
- Use a very small amount of toothpaste
- Start from the upper row of teeth
- Then brush the lower row
- Dentists suggest brushing in a vertical direction
- Brush the top row downwards
- Brush the lower row upwards
- Similarly clean the inside of the teeth
- Use tongue cleaner
- Rinse the mouth with water properly
- Brush the teeth twice, once before going to bed
- For newborns below 1 year of age, clean the gums after every breastfeed to remove bacteria causing germs
I hope this article answers most of your queries on how to brush your baby’s teeth. Feel free to share your thoughts.