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How to Choose the Best Toothbrush For Children

Establishing good dental hygiene habits for your child early on is the best way to help them enjoy a lifetime of healthier, happier smiles. When learning how to care for their kid’s teeth, many parents wonder about how to choose the best toothbrush for their child.

Learn more about the best toothbrushes for kids from the experts at Milestone Kids Dentistry!

The Best Toothbrushes for Kids

Instilling oral hygiene habits early on is important, but it’s just as crucial to get them a toothbrush that is suitable for their needs. Here are some of the most important features of children’s toothbrushes:

  • Soft, round-ended bristles to gently clean the teeth and gums
  • An easy-grip handle so your child can easily hold onto the toothbrush
  • A fun and colorful design to get your child excited about brushing their teeth
  • Age-specific toothbrushes — for babies, toddlers, 5-8-year-olds, and 8- year-olds and up — keep their smiles looking great.

Should Children Have a Manual or Electric Toothbrush?

When they are used as directed, manual and electric toothbrushes are both very effective at cleaning the teeth. The choice between an electric or manual toothbrush will depend upon your child’s brushing habits, disposition, and other factors.

If your child enjoys the sensation of an electric toothbrush, be sure to get one for them that has soft bristles. It’s essential to get one that is effective, so look for electric toothbrushes marked with an ADA seal of acceptance. Products with this seal have been vetted for safety and effectiveness.

Remember that an electric toothbrush is not a replacement for supervising your child’s brushing habits. Using both types of toothbrushes as directed is key to achieving better dental health.

Choosing the Best Toothbrush for Your Child by Age

Your kiddo’s age will be one of the main factors in determining what toothbrush they should use. Here are some qualities to look for in a toothbrush depending on your child’s age:

Choosing the Best Toothbrush for Babies

Your child’s dental hygiene routine should begin in early infancy! Before any of their teeth erupt, use a damp cloth or gauze to wipe your baby’s gums. After their first tooth erupts, use a soft-bristle toothbrush with a tiny head to brush emerging teeth. This keeps their mouth clean while getting them used to the sensation of getting their teeth brushed.

Choosing the Best Toothbrush for Toddlers

By age two, your child may want to be more involved with teeth brushing. You could even put their hand over yours while brushing to show them how! Toothbrushes for toddlers should have small heads and easily graspable handles. 

Choosing the Best Toothbrush for Children 5-8

By ages 5-8, your child is beginning to gain additional motor skills and independence, so you can engage them more during the brushing process. Toothbrushes for young children have a slimmer handle and are designed for larger jaws. 

Choosing the Best Toothbrush for Big Kids

By ages 7 or 8, your child should be able to brush their teeth by themselves. While they may still be a bit young for adult toothbrushes, there are many soft-bristled toothbrushes available for kiddos in this age range.

A young girl in a red shirt choosing between 2 toothbrushes that a dentist is holding.

Choosing the Best Toothbrush for Children With Special Needs

Kids with sensory challenges or special needs can make dental hygiene routines more difficult. Sometimes the sound and feel of an electric toothbrush can be overwhelming for kids. In this situation, they may be better off with a manual soft-bristled toothbrush.

Children that struggle with coordination and motor skills often benefit from using electric toothbrushes for kids. These toothbrushes have bigger handles, so they’re easily graspable by little hands.

Learn More About Children’s Dental Hygiene with Milestone Kids Dentistry

Knowing how to choose the best toothbrush for children can be intimidating for parents. Fortunately, many toothbrushes are designed with your child’s specific needs in mind. No matter what their age or personal needs, there are many good toothbrush options for your kiddo!

At Milestone Kids Dentistry, we know that every child is unique, and they deserve dental care that is as unique as they are. We offer preventative dental care, behavior management, nutritional education, and more.

We specialize in helping kids build healthy, strong smiles across Lake Stevens and Snohomish. Our pediatric dental experts are ready to help your little one on their smile journey. Schedule an appointment now!

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