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Blonde mom teaches her young daughter how to brush and floss her teeth in a green and white bathroom

How to Teach Your Child to Brush & Floss Their Teeth

July 28, 2021 2:32 pm

Each child is different and there are many factors that play into establishing an oral hygiene routine, from manual dexterity to maturity to attention span. On average, kids should be able to start brushing their teeth on their own with supervision around the age of six. However, they will still need their teeth brushed by an adult before age six.

The earlier you start teaching them about brushing and flossing, the easier the transition will be when they start doing it on their own and the less risk they’ll develop dental disease.

Tips to Teach a Young Child About Brushing & Flossing


Keeping your kids fed, clean, and clothed can feel like a daily battle! Once you add in brushing and flossing, your daytime and nighttime routines may seem a little daunting. Here are some pointers for teaching your child how to brush and floss while making it more enjoyable for everyone involved:

  • Introduce “toothbrushing” to your baby with an infant teething toothbrush
  • Talk about brushing and flossing using children’s books about oral healthcare
  • Model good oral hygiene by brushing your own teeth in front of your child
  • Narrate what you’re doing while you clean their teeth
  • Let them hold their toothbrush before and after brushing
  • Play music or an entertaining video during your child’s oral hygiene routine
  • Use a fun timer to help your child see how long it’s been

Create a Reward System

We understand that it can be difficult to get your child excited about oral hygiene, particularly when they are old enough to brush independently. We recommend implementing a reward system where they can earn stickers, a prize, or extra play time after they complete a certain number of days of brushing and flossing.

Oral Hygiene Education at Brooks Pediatric Dentistry

If you need help teaching your child how to brush and floss, we’re here to help! Our team provides education during routine visits to help your child learn positive oral healthcare habits. Please contact Brooks Pediatric Dentistry today to schedule an appointment!

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