Choosing the Right Toothpaste
Palo Alto, CA
Teaching your child at an early age how to brush their teeth is one of the most important skills that you can show them. Good oral hygiene can help save them from a lifetime of painful dental issues and embarrassment. However, even the most careful parent may still struggle with knowing how to pick out the best toothpaste for their child.
With so many toothpaste products out there on the market, it can be a challenge to know which ones are best for your little one. Some of the toothpaste may not even be beneficial, and some may be harmful! We here at Palo Alto Oral Health understand that this can be an overwhelming decision for you, which is why we have come up with this helpful guide to help you know how to pick the best one for your family.
What You Should Look For
One of the first things you want to look for when choosing a toothpaste is the ADA (American Dental Association) seal of approval. That means that this toothpaste is safe to use in your home and is effective to protect teeth and gums from bacteria and tooth decay. You will want to make sure that there is fluoride in the toothpaste, as well. This mineral can help prevent tooth decay and help keep your child’s teeth healthy. You also do not want any harsh abrasives like walnut shells in them. If the label says “whitening” on it, it may be too harsh for your child.
Another important thing to consider when looking for toothpaste is flavor. While a minty toothpaste may be just fine for adult mouths, they may be too strong for your child. You will want to steer anything that may make your child avoid brushing their teeth. Brushing and flossing are highly important and we don't want your child to be apprehensive about those things. There are many flavors marketed toward children, which should help to pick out a good toothpaste for them easier. Remember to supervise them to make sure they do not swallow it.
Safety When Brushing
You should start taking care of your child’s teeth as soon as they start to erupt, which typically occurs right around their first birthday. In the beginning, you should use a small, child-sized toothbrush that fits comfortably into their little mouth. Place a tiny bit of fluoridated toothpaste on the brush, around the size of a grain of rice, and gently brush their teeth for them.
Once your child is old enough to start brushing, you can start to teach them how to brush. Around their second birthday, you can use a little bit more toothpaste on their toothbrush. We advise a pea-sized dollop. Always supervise your child when brushing to make sure they do not accidentally swallow the toothpaste, as they cannot do it on their own just yet.
Teaching your child how to brush their teeth properly is a great way to keep them on track to having a healthy and happy smile. A good oral hygiene regimen can help prevent cavity-causing bacteria from building up on their teeth, which in turn can help stop tooth decay from forming. In addition to taking good care of their teeth at home, your child also needs to see us every six months for a checkup. To learn more about how to choose the right toothpaste, or to set up an appointment with us here at Palo Alto Oral Health, please give us a call today at (650) 321-9693!