[Parentsgroup-list] suggestions for teeth cleaning?

Joy Geren joygeren at gmail.com
Wed Feb 25 15:44:05 EST 2009

At that age I would try to brush for one song worth, once a day. My son
could pick the song (once he was old enough), but each time the mouth closed
the song would pause until we could start brushing again. We regularly
picked out new toothbrushes/toothpaste at the store to keep things fun.
Making a big deal about picking it out and letting him carry it through the
store helped him get excited about using it. I also liked the battery
toothbrushes, they cost a little more but much less than dentist visits and
let you make the most of those few seconds of brushing and your child might
actually get some cleaning done while brushing their own teeth.

I had the same question about when to take him to the dentist so I kept tabs
on how all the kids in his daycare did at the dentist. The trips for those
under 2 seemed fairly disastrous. I took my son around his third birthday,
they didn't do much but he enjoyed it and it was a start. Of course sooner
if your child is having problems but I would say even 4 is probably fine if
all is well- we just happened to have free dental insurance through
MassHealth. We went to Cambridge Pediatric Dental Associates on Mass Ave.
Since he just had a cleaning and check I can't comment on their technical
skills but they were nice and clearly set up to make the dentist a fun
rather than scary experience for kids. I think a specialized pediatric
dentist is a good idea if possible.

Good luck!
-Joy (mom of Toby 3.5yrs and Della 9m who laughs everyday when I brush her 4

On Wed, Feb 25, 2009 at 11:36 AM, Michelle Forman
<mlf534 at mail.harvard.edu>wrote:

> Hi everyone -
> I have a 17 month old whose teeth we have attempted to swab with a small
> toothbrush with water. He is now refusing to open his mouth for this
> exercise and I'm nervous about tooth / gum problems. Wondering if anyone
> could shed light on:
> effective practices, products, strategies for teeth cleaning at this age
> the age when a first dentist's visit is in order and any pediatric dentist
> recommendations
> thoughts on how often one should be brushing their teeth at this age
> Thanks so much!
> Michelle
> --
> Michelle Forman
> Doctoral Student, Education Policy
> Strategic Education Research Partnership
> Harvard Graduate School of Education
> 617-895-6455 (cell)
> 617-495-7661 (office)
> _______________________________________________
> Parentsgroup-list mailing list
> Parentsgroup-list at lists.hcs.harvard.edu
> http://lists.hcs.harvard.edu/mailman/listinfo/parentsgroup-list

-- =

Joy Geren, M.A.
Doctoral Candidate
Laboratory for Developmental Studies
Department of Psychology
Harvard University
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