You adore your kewpie’s gummy grin, so you should make pay close attention to his dental hygiene, too. You should start caring for your baby’s gums virtually from birth ― simply wipe down his gums at least twice a day with moist gauze or a damp washcloth. If you are afraid you’ll forget, make this part of your sweetie’s feeding and bedtime routine.
Poor gum health can spell serious trouble for bubba’s dental health. The bacteria left behind from the milk may cause plaque to accumulate, which may damage your infant’s teeth as they develop. Pay extra attention if bubba’s drooling non-stop, too, as he may be teething.
Milk teeth start to appear from as early as 6 months ― the first to sprout are usually the ones at the bottom. It’s vital to ensure milk teeth are free from decay as baby may experience trouble chewing and speaking if he loses any of his pearly whites. You should bring bubba on his first visit to the dentist before he turns 1. In the meantime, you can soothe sore gums with teethers.
Pick a first toothbrush with a soft, small head and a long handle for your mini-me. Gently brush the front and back of the teeth with kid-friendly toothpaste — the amount you need is about the size of a grain of rice. Continue to help him brush his teeth until he is old enough to handle the toothbrush on his own, at about age 6 or 7.
Here are choice toothbrushes to consider:
BABY BUDDY WIPE N BRUSH SILICONE TOOTHBRUSH AND DENTAL WIPE ASSISTANT
What Wrap a wet gauze or washcloth on your fingertip before inserting it into the finger brush an opening at the brush tip lets you clean your baby’s gums while soft bumps on this finger brush massages his gums. Suitable for children between 4 and 16 months.
Parents say Brenda Ang says the toothbrush is compact, easy to bring around and great for family trips.
DREAMBABY SILICONE BABY TOOTHBRUSHES
From Pupsik Studio
What Made of soft yet strong silicone, the finger brush fits easily on an adult’s fingers. The soft bristles slide easily over baby’s fragile gums. Suitable for babies from 0 to 18 months.
Parents say Tammy Goh, who says the brush fits well over her index finger, notes that her son enjoys putting it into his mouth and chewing on it as it calms his sore gums. It’s also effective in preventing her little one from “chowing down” on her finger.
Five more toothbrush recommendations coming right up…
TOMMEE TIPPEE TOOTHBRUSH TRAINER SET
From Baby Online
What Each toothbrush is uniquely designed to suit baby’s oral care needs at different stages. At Stage One, you’ll use rubber gum massager fit for babies aged 7 months and up. The ridges in the massager soothe your kid’s gums while removing grime from the gums. It’s also a good way to introduce your little one to the toothbrushing habit. By 11 months, you can use the Stage Two brush, which features rubber bristles instead of nylon ones found on a regular version. And when your child’s teeth become visible, the Stage Three brush will serve as his first proper toothbrush. Suitable for children 7 months and up.
Parents say Yvonne Lee says this set of toothbrushes is wallet-friendly as it has an extended shelf-life, since the different tools will follow her daughter as she moves from one teething stage to another. The Stage Three toothbrush is also easy for her daughter to hold, thanks to the broad handle.
PIGEON BABY TRAINING TOOTHBRUSH SET
From Pupsik Studio
What Meet your kewpie’s oral hygiene needs till she’s age 3 with this set of three BPA-free toothbrushes. The Lesson 1 toothbrush (in pink) features a broad and contoured handle, so baby can grasp it with ease. A detachable shield prevents it from becoming a choking hazard. The Lesson 2 piece (in yellow) — for when she’s 8 to 12 months old — has soft bristles instead of the usual stiffer nylon ones, which can leave teensy abrasions on bubba’s gums. Such abrasions can become inflamed, thus leading to gum disease and even bad breath! Children aged 1 and 3 years can graduate to the Lesson 3 toothbrush (in green), which boasts longer bristles at the tip to clean more effectively.
Parents say Noting that it’s a good starter toothbrush, Norhayati Hamid likes the shield as it prevents her toddler from placing it too far in his mouth and then gagging on it.
EBISU HELLO KITTY TOOTHBRUSH
From Baby Online
What Giving her a toothbrush decorated in your sweetie’s favourite cartoon character may just encourage her to look forward to her twice daily ritual. Easy to hold because of the flat and broad handle, this toothbrush’s small head fit effectively cleans all the difficult-to-reach areas at the back of her mouth. Suitable for children from 3 to 6 years old.
Parents say Sarah Tan says her daughter loves the toothbrush’s design and delicate bristles. However, she finds the head too small to clean more teeth at once.
ORAL-B FROZEN KIDS POWER BRUSH
What As if running on electricity isn’t good enough, a compatible app comes with this toothbrush, promising to train your toddler to brush her teeth effectively. The Disney Magic Timer App has activities such as the unveiling of a secret image as your child brushes to ensure that she brushes for the dentist-recommended two minutes. The spinning bristles also gently clean plaque on all sides of her teeth. Suitable for children 3 years or older.
Parents say Shalini Rajendren, whose daughter loves the design, says the toothbrush is powerful yet not noisy. Nor does she now need to remind her daughter to brush her teeth.
Main photo: iStock
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