Establishing strong oral hygiene practices early in your child's life helps to ensure that they will know how to keep their smile healthy throughout their lifetime. Flossing is essential for keeping teeth and gums healthy. Our Delta children's dentists share some tips on teaching your child to floss every day.
Begin Flossing In Infancy
In order to help make flossing a regular part of your child's oral hygiene routine, begin flossing your child's teeth as soon as they have two side-by-side teeth. While this likely seems very young, an early introduction helps to make flossing a normal experience for your child as they get older. Not only that, by starting a flossing routine early in life you are helping your child to prevent tooth decay and other dental health issues from developing later in childhood.
Flossing Techniques For All Stages of Childhood
It goes without saying that while your child is very young you will need to floss their teeth for them, but as your child gets older and their manual dexterity improves they will want to floss by themselves. If your child is keen to start flossing their own teeth, child appropriate floss and flossers are available online or at most well-stocked pharmacies, and come in a variety of shapes, colours and flavours.
For older kids who have developed the manual dexterity to floss with regular dental floss, there are a variety of dental floss options available. Shop for a dental floss that your child will enjoy using such as kid friendly grape and berry flavoured flosses.
Allow Your Kids Pick Their Own Toothbrush & Floss
Allowing your child have fun shopping for oral hygiene equipment can help them to feel more enthusiastic about their oral hygiene routine. Toothbrushes and other dental tools are available in a wide range of kid-friendly shapes and sizes. Help your child to choose tools that are age appropriate but that they will enjoy using. Children feel very grownup when making decisions for themselves and will be more likely to use items that they choose for themselves. Many supermarkets and pharmacies stock a range of toothbrushes and flossers designed especially for kids.
Have Fun with Oral Hygiene
Brushing and flossing as a family can be a fun way to encourage your children to floss. Caring for your oral health together sets a good example, and allows you to spend some quality time teaching your child about the importance of caring for their oral health. To make the experience even more fun put on one of the many toothbrushing songs readily available online, or hum as you brush, then follow up with some family flossing.
Reward You Child for Flossing
Positive reinforcement can go a long way if your child is still reluctant to floss. Create a flossing calendar and add a star or tooth sticker for each day that your child flosses. Once your child has flossed for the predetermined number of days in a row, reward your child with a small treat. Age appropriate rewards could include stickers, crayons, or even a book.