When Should Your Child Start Flossing?
You know that brushing and flossing are both vital parts of your child’s dental health. However, you may wonder what age is appropriate for flossing. We’re going to address this question in two ways. First of all, at what age should you start helping your child to floss? Second, at what age can your child begin flossing on his or her own?
Helping Your Child to Floss
Once your child is growing teeth next to each other, they need to be cleaned in between. That means children need to begin flossing between the ages of 2 and 6 depending on how quickly they get their primary teeth in. However, it’s not a great idea to let a child floss without help at those young ages, so here are some suggestion for providing assistance.
- Use about 18 inches of floss and wrap it around your middle fingers just as you would when flossing your own teeth.
- Gently slide the floss back and forth to get it between your child’s teeth. Never force the floss straight toward the gums.
- Curve the floss around each individual tooth moving it both forward and back and up and down.
Don’t be surprised if the gums bleed a little during the first few days of flossing. If bleeding continues after a number of days, call your dentist.
When a Child Can Floss Alone
Most children are able to handle the concept of flossing on their own by age 10. You may be able to start a little earlier or may have to wait longer depending on the individual child’s needs. When a child takes over the responsibility of flossing, you should supervise a few times just to make sure it is being done properly.
A Good Flossing Habit for Life
At BRSH+FLSS, we focus on prevention rather than restoration. That means we want to help you instill in your children good habits like flossing that will leave your child with a lifelong smile. Schedule an appointment by calling 619-741-1500, and start your child on the road to healthy dental care today!