The short answer to this question is yes, although here at the Midtown Dental Group we are all too well aware that kids teeth flossing is not a favorite activity for children or adults for that matter. We do find some parents are quite surprised to find out very young children should be flossing regularly.
As soon as their teeth come into contact then you need to begin flossing their teeth for them. It is important for good dental health as flossing is the only effective way to remove food and plaque that get trapped in between teeth. A toothbrush cannot reach into these tight spaces, and these contact areas in between teeth account for one-third of your tooth surfaces so flossing is definitely a high priority for good dental health. By making sure your kids teeth flossing done well, you can reduce gum infections and the risk of tooth decay (Read more: Children’s Tooth Decay).
Kids Teeth Flossing: When to Start?
We know a very young kids teeth flossing isn’t easy and one way to make it a bit simpler for you both is to have your child on your lap so you can get a better view of areas that need to be flossed. You can also ask Dr. Amy Lustbader, or any of our friendly pediatric dentist in Midtown or our dental team for advice and a quick demonstration on how to do this more effectively. Some parents may find it useful to sing while they do this task to make it more fun for their child or perhaps to make up a story about daily flossing.
Which Type of Dental Floss Is the Best Use for Kids?
There are lots of different types of dental floss that you can try and it’s really down to personal preference and what feels most comfortable for your kids teeth flossing. You might need to experiment with a few different kinds. With conventional floss, simply wrap the floss around your middle fingers and then hold it between your index fingers and thumbs so you can easily slide the floss in between each tooth. Hold the floss so it creates a C shape around the tooth and move it up and down to remove the maximum amount of plaque and food debris. You can also try using stick floss or ask us for some help and advice.
Why Regular Flossing Is More Comfortable for Your Child
Ideally you should be flossing your child’s teeth once a day, and just before bedtime is a great time to do it as they will go to bed with a nice clean mouth. Although it might seem an effort to floss every night, regular flossing will be a more comfortable experience for your child. They will have healthier and stronger gums and there is far less chance of them bleeding or feeling uncomfortable.
When Should My Child Begin Flossing without My Help?
Flossing requires quite a lot of manual dexterity and although your child should be able to begin brushing their teeth around the ages of seven or eight, you might need to help with your kids teeth flossing until they are aged nine or 10.