When Should You Start Brushing Baby’s Teeth?

a baby smiling at the camera with food in his mouth

I hate brushing my babies’ teeth. It’s right up there with potty training! So I asked Dr. Helen Mo to answer ALL the questions we get about baby teeth. Here’s what she had to say:

When should I start brushing baby’s teeth?

As soon as the teeth are in! This is typically between 5 and 8 months old.

How much toothpaste should I use?

Use a rice sized amount of toothpaste for babies and a pea sized amount for children 3+.

What are the best toothpastes for babies?

Favorites are Tom’s of Maine, Burt’s Bees, and Hello Products. Not only do they carry the ADA seal, but they also use all-natural ingredients. 

Is there anything I should be doing before teeth come in?

Yes! Desensitize your baby to the sensation of brushing with a finger brush or silicone toothbrush. This will make it more tolerable once the teeth erupt. 

Do babies need teeth to chew? 

No. teeth that we actually use to chew (our molars) typically come in between 11 and 30 months! Babies can munch and grind with their gums. 

My baby will NOT let me brush their teeth. 

Many babies do not enjoy the physical sensation of brushing and want ownership in the process. Make the brushing fun by roleplaying or even letting your little one brush your teeth and give your little one their own brush to hold (or two!) while you brush their teeth. When you’re not brushing, let them safely explore their teeth & mouth with a soft, silicone toothbrush. 

Thanks Dr. Mo! xo

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