How do I brush my child's teeth? (6 months to 7 years) 

Health visitor Penny Lazell explains how you should brush your child's teeth and the importance of getting into a routine of regular brushing.

Find out more about teething and tooth care.

Transcript of How do I brush my child's teeth? (6 months to 7 years)

How do I brush my child’s teeth?   Penny: Start brushing your baby's teeth when they get their first tooth. This is generally around six months of age but can be before and can be after. Are you going to brush your teeth, Mia? When brushing your baby's teeth, the best way to do it is to sit them on your lap with their head against your chest. Take a small baby toothbrush and smear just a small amount of age-appropriate toothpaste onto that brush.   It's a really good idea to sit in front of a mirror, because then you and your baby can see what you're doing. Start off with very gentle, circular motion around all the teeth and all areas of the gums.   If you don't have a toothbrush, or your baby doesn't have many teeth, you could just use a piece of gauze that you wrap around your finger. Again, smear a tiny amount of age-appropriate toothpaste onto that and rub it around the gums and the teeth in a circular motion. That's it. At the bottom.   There's no need to get your baby to rinse their mouth out. It's important that the fluoride in that toothpaste stays in the mouth.  Many children don't like having their teeth brushed, when you're doing it for them.   You need to be brushing their teeth twice a day, especially at bedtime, so try and make this fun. You can make up games. You can make up songs. You shouldn't let your baby walk around with a toothbrush in their mouth. There's a danger that if they fall over, they could push it right down into their mouth and cause an injury.   Lots of parents don't realise they need to start brushing their baby's teeth as soon as that first tooth comes through. But, as you can see, it's really important to get this brushing underway, because this is going to be a habit for life.    


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Children's teeth

From brushing their first tooth to their first trip to the dentist, here's how to take care of your children's teeth