Elmhurst Pediatric Dentist Answers Your Questions About Dental Care For Children

Written by Dr. Scharfenberg on Oct 24, 2023

In our Elmhurst family dental office, we work with dental patients both young and old to help them optimize their oral hygiene routines. We often hear from parents who have questions about dental care for their children. That is why today we are answering some common inquiries about how to care for young teeth. Keep reading to learn more!

Q: I’ve heard that kids shouldn’t use toothpaste with fluoride—is that true?

A: Yes and no! The problem with fluoride is that when young children—who are still developing their adult teeth—ingest fluoride, their permanent teeth may develop with dental fluorosis (which manifests as dental stains and pitted enamel). So, children who are still swallowing toothpaste on a regular basis should use toothpaste without fluoride. However, once your child has learned not to swallow toothpaste, they can use products with fluoride!

Q: Are there any special considerations for my child when brushing?

A: Our dental team talks to pediatric dental patients about how to brush optimally, and there are a few key things that you can reinforce at home. First of all, both adult and young patients should be brushing for about two minutes every time that they brush. You can even hum a tune, or play your child’s favorite song in order to help track the time. Additionally, many pediatric dental patients brush their teeth using too much pressure. While it may seem to make sense that more pressure equals better cleaning, the truth is that using too much force can actually degrade enamel and damage gum tissue. Teach your child to brush his or her teeth using light pressure.

Do you have more questions for our dental team? Please call our office to speak with our helpful team, and to schedule a consultation with our Elmhurst family dentists. We can put your child on the right track toward lasting dental health!