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At What Age Should My Child Start Flossing?

At What Age Should My Child Start Flossing?

April 26th, 2022

It’s no secret that flossing is an essential component of proper oral hygiene practices. So how do you know when it’s time for your little one to start? Here’s a look at flossing best practices to set the stage for a lifetime of healthy smiles.

When Should Your Child Start Flossing?

The best time to start flossing is once the teeth start fitting closely and two teeth touch, typically between ages 2 and 6. If you’re not sure, slide a strand of dental floss between two teeth. If it sticks a little, you’ll know the teeth are touching, and it’s time to start.

Why Start Flossing So Early?

Even though your little one’s baby teeth will eventually fall out, it’s essential to maintain their health. That’s because they play a role in ensuring the adult teeth are healthy when they come in. Baby teeth hold the space needed for the permanent teeth and serve as guides when it’s time for them to erupt. They also help with the development of the jaws and muscles.

Losing a baby tooth too early can result in the surrounding teeth shifting into the gap, leading to crooked permanent teeth that will likely require orthodontic treatment later on. Keeping your little one’s teeth healthy will help your child chew with ease, ensuring proper nutrition. It will also help with speech development and ensure your child has a beautiful, healthy smile.

How Does Flossing Enhance Your Child’s Oral Health?

Flossing removes bacteria and debris from those hard-to-reach areas between your child’s teeth. Otherwise, plaque accumulation can result in gum disease and tooth decay. Keep in mind that flossing isn’t a substitute for brushing. Both are needed to maintain a healthy smile. The earlier you help your little one develop proper oral hygiene practices, the more likely they’ll continue to care for their teeth and gums into adulthood.

Helping Your Child Floss

Children need help until they learn how to floss on their own, about second or third grade. Gently slide the floss between your little one’s teeth and avoid snapping it down on the gum line. Curve the piece of floss around each tooth and gently move it up and down the sides. Use a clean part of the floss every time you move from one tooth to another.

Quality Pediatric Dentistry in El Segundo and Lomita

Contact your trusted team at Avalon Dental Care to learn more about caring for your child’s oral health. Our team is committed to helping our young patients establish healthy oral health habits right from the start to lay the groundwork for a lifetime of healthy smiles. We look forward to caring for your child’s dental needs. Call us and schedule your appointment today!

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