• Guest Blogger

Awwww. . .That First Toothy Grin. But Then What?

by Rachel from Oklahoma


I hope this information and these tips help you with your child’s teeth care. My advice is lots of patience and imagination. Make your child’s teeth care routine positive. Even if it is just chewing on a soft-bristled toothbrush for a moment, it can evolve into a healthy teeth cleaning routine.


Here is how I keep my child's smile healthy:


The one thing I cherish as a mother is that first toothy smile your baby gives you. You know that one where they have that very first bottom tooth. That smile can melt any heart.

Then comes the responsibility. How am I going to teach my child to keep their smile healthy? As a mother of many, 7 to be exact, I have learned that the earlier you start with teeth and gum care the better.


I start teeth care as soon as they are born. I take a clean washcloth or gauze and rub it along the baby's teeth to encourage healthy gums. There is no need to use toothpaste. Clean water will do the job.


When your baby cuts their first tooth, move to using a soft toothbrush and just a dab (rice size) of toothpaste. Use a toothpaste made especially for children. They are not ready for adult toothpaste - that may be too strong for your baby. This can discourage a good teeth care routine. Make teeth brushing part of a regular schedule.


I have one child that has autism. He has sensory issues. Teaching him to brush his teeth was a little more complicated. I started by getting him a soft-bristled toothbrush and just let him chew on it. He does not like the taste of toothpaste, so through trial and error, we found a bubblegum-flavored toothpaste that he enjoys (pick your battles). Keeping a schedule is important. He is six years old, and brushing his teeth is part of his wake up and bedtime routine. He expects it.

This blog was written by one of our guest bloggers, Rachel.

Want more information on brushing your child's teeth? wichealth.org has a free online lesson called Two Minutes Twice A Day For A Healthy Smile. Find it on wichealth.org in the Children 1-5 category!