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When Can Children Start Brushing By Themselves?

Posted on 7/10/2023 by Fariba Mutschler
When Can Children Start Brushing By Themselves?Parents are always working towards moving their children along a continuum from total dependence to total independence. It can be hard to know as a parent when to give your children more control over daily tasks. One of those daily tasks children need to be able to do well is brushing and flossing their teeth. Here are some ways you can tell whether or not your child is ready to brush and floss their teeth on their own.

How Well Are They Brushing?

If you think your child is ready to brush and floss on their own, there are some signs you can look for before you turn them loose to handle their own dental health. First, you can time them to see how long they are brushing. Your child should be brushing for about two minutes to ensure all of their teeth are cleaned thoroughly. If they are finished brushing in 30 seconds, you'll know they aren't brushing all of their teeth effectively.

One great way to have your child self-check their brushing is to have them run their fingers across their teeth. If they can hear a squeaking sound, like the sound when you rub a window clean, they have done a good job brushing their teeth.

What Else Should I Look For?

While you're taking a look at their brushing technique, it's a good time to let them show you their flossing technique as well. Rather than giving your children string floss, you might want to opt for flossers with handles instead because they are easier to manage. Make sure your child is using the flosser to gently get particles between teeth rather than scraping their gums in a seesaw motion.

Good dental health is a lifetime imperative, and the more parents can emphasize good dental habits, the more likely their children are to have lifelong dental health. If you're worried your children aren't brushing their best, it's never too late to develop good brushing and flossing habits with your child.

My daughter was a little nervous to have her dental work done but everyone in the office was super friendly and very reassuring and that helped her nervousness go away. Thanks for the excellent dental experience. ~ Lilyana G.

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Dr. Fariba Mutschler & Dr. Mark Mutschler have created this informative blog to help educate the community. If you like an article or the dental blog in general please use the share it button to post to Facebook, Twitter, or Google+.
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