Children's Dental and Oral Healthcare Basics

A Parent's Guide to Children's Dentistry

Whether you're a parent, guardian or grandparent, I know that having children means you stay busy. I also know, with three kids of my own, that dental health can be easily overlooked with everything else going on.

Children's oral hygiene, though, is extremely important and understanding the basics of children's dental and oral healthcare needs is the first step in helping your child establish a lifetime of healthy oral habits at an early age.

One of the best ways to educate children about dental health and maintaining good oral hygiene is to familiarize yourself with the fundamentals of children’s dentistry.

Oral Hygiene

Brushing children’s teeth twice a day, flossing daily and regular dental checkups are essential for establishing good oral hygiene at an early age. You will need to brush your child's teeth until they are old enough to do it on their own (when they are able to rinse and spit out the toothpaste without swallowing it). This step-by-step guide will show you the proper way to brush your children’s teeth.

Preventing Cavities

While the best protection against tooth decay is good oral health, additional steps can be taken to prevent cavities. Use a toothpaste that contains fluoride. When your child’s permanent back teeth erupt, you should talk to your child's dentist about applying dental sealants.

Dental Habits

Children can develop dental habits at a very early age.

While it is important to maintain good oral habits in children, it is equally important to understand and break the bad habits.

Dental Problems

If your child does develop cavities, you should take him to the dentist for an evaluation and possible fillings. Do not be under the misconception that children do not need to have cavities filled because their baby teeth will fall out eventually.

The fact is that children keep many of their baby teeth for a long time and cavities can be painful.


Nutrition plays an important role in good dental health. Eating nutritional snacks and limiting the amount of sugary drinks will help to prevent plaque from forming on the teeth.

Tooth Brushing Charts

My kids love tooth brushing charts and actually like to brush their teeth when I have them hanging on the bathroom wall. I change them out every few months to keep them interested, and they keep brushing. If you're constantly reminding your children to brush their teeth, try these free printable brushing charts and see if it makes a difference.

Educating Children

Children love to have fun while they are learning. Teaching children about good dental health is easy with these fun, free and educational dental activities, such as puzzles, games, printable coloring pages, brushing charts, fun facts, crafts, dental experiments and more.

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