We get so many great questions on toothpaste – what is a good brand, are there any mild flavors for children, or how much toothpaste should my child be using? It is important to find a good toothpaste for both adults and children and we have some information to help you choose a good toothpaste for your little ones!
Toothpaste plays an important role in our dental health – whether your child has 2 teeth or 20 teeth! For example, our mouths are home to tons of bacteria and this bacteria overtime will form a film over our teeth known as plaque, which can lead to other problems in the future such as tooth decay or gingivitis. By brushing your child’s teeth twice a day with a good toothpaste you are reducing the risk of oral disease by more than half. Fluoride has been added to toothpaste since the late 1800’s and has significantly reduced the rate of tooth decay over the years. The purpose of fluoride in our toothpaste is to strengthen the teeth by re-mineralizing the enamel. Although most of the water you drink from your home has fluoride in it, it does not give you that same protection from cavities like a fluoride toothpaste would. Some great toothpastes to try for your little ones are Tom’s brand – there are some kids that do not like that “spicy” taste from a mint toothpaste but Tom’s is great in that way because it has very subtle fruit flavors such as strawberry or orange mango. For kids that are being introduced to fluoride toothpaste for the first time, it is recommended to use the size of a grain of rice as a reference to get them comfortable with the flavor and texture of the fluoride paste while still using an effective amount to help prevent cavities.
For the even tinier mouths (like our 1 and 2 year olds) that are still learning to “swish and spit,” Tom’s also makes a fluoride free toothpaste so parents can feel more comfortable knowing their child isn’t digesting the fluoride.
As for the older kids who may like that minty taste, another great suggestion would be Crest Pro Health Stages toothpaste – this is a mild gel and has been kid tested and approved. It also comes in princess, superhero, or other favorite Disney characters on the packaging that appeal to the kid’s eyes, making them excited to grab their toothbrush and their favorite toothpaste and have fun protecting themselves from cavities!