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When do you let them bursh their own teeth?

I saw the CM Poll on my homepage about what age your kids started to brush their own teeth. It raises the question if they mean completely on their own or own their own with a follow up from mom. My DD is 5.5 and we brush first and then let her brush after we are done. I don't see this changing any time soon. The poll actually had as young as 2, 3 and 4 brushing their own teeth. That surprises me. What age did you kids brush their teeth without a parental follow up?


Asked by mom2queenie2004 at 5:29 PM on Oct. 21, 2009 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Level 16 (2,464 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (19)
  • When i was majoring in early childhood education i took the Health Safety and Nutrition class. They had a dental assistant come to the class and give out information on dental care. She said that dentists don't recommend letting your child brush their teeth 100% on their own until they can tie their shoes.
    and 2 minutes of brushing at least 2 times a day.
    So, you brush for 1 minute and then the child brushes for 1 minute.

    That being said, sometimes i let my boys (almost 4 and almost 5) brush their teeth all on their own, other times i do it for them, and other times we take turns. it just depends on how much time we have.

    Answer by outstandingLove at 5:32 PM on Oct. 21, 2009

  • My son will be 5 in two wks. My girl is 3, almost 3 1/2.
    Currently they brush 1st and then I brush them on my own.
    I am considering adding in a time of the day when they'd be on their own brushing... after lunch perhaps.... for practice/experience but not 100% for hygiene

    I am like you, OP.... we don't see our plan changing anytime soon. It's worked well for us

    I often wonder about people complaining about their kids teeth.... all these root canals even. Brushing (like butt wiping!) is hard and difficult to teach properly.... I will probably help my kids until they're at least 8 or 9.... more if necessary. I'd rather smother a little than pay huge dental bills or let them suffer with decay, etc.

    Answer by hibbingmom at 5:44 PM on Oct. 21, 2009

  • We have a 4yo and a 6yo. We brush their teeth first and then let them brush. I don't see it changing any time soon either. Until they are 8 or 9 at least. I get strange looks from people when I share this information, but imo...children aren't capable of brushing properly or reaching those "hard to reach" areas until at least then. This is what works for our family.

    Answer by motherofpearls at 5:48 PM on Oct. 21, 2009

  • I have a four year old, almost 5. Same thing with us! He brushes first and then I follow up. I don't plan on changing this any time soon either! Good question!

    Answer by usbornebooksdh at 5:58 PM on Oct. 21, 2009

  • All of my children began brushing their teeth when they were 2, but of course I followed up after them. With my son I needed to brush after him until he was 7 and then I still occassionally did an inspection :). I flossed his teeth until he was 7 1/2. My youngest daughter is so much more thorough, she never misses a spot and loves to floss her teeth herself too - and she's 6.

    Answer by Astrid99 at 7:07 PM on Oct. 21, 2009

  • My daughter is 7yrs old..She brushes her teeth on her own, Has been for a year or so. Before that she would brush first and I would get what she missed.

    Answer by kathynej7142007 at 7:55 PM on Oct. 21, 2009

  • No way would I let my 2 yr old or my 5 yr old brush their own teeth by them self. We always do the teeth brushing, and we'll probly be doing it for a while :)

    Answer by Jen5454 at 8:12 PM on Oct. 21, 2009

  • Sophia doesn't do a very good job brushing her own teeth so I will continue to brush her teeth till I think she can do a decent job. I don't know how or why parents think their kiddos can brush their own.

    Answer by sararsara at 9:39 PM on Oct. 21, 2009

  • My son is 4 and I do his teeth at night, brushing and flossing, and he does his own in the morning. He does a really good job and his dentist said that what we're doing is fine and his teeth are in great shape.

    Answer by RhondaVeggie at 11:35 PM on Oct. 21, 2009

  • Ours is 6, can tie his shoes, but can't brush his teeth well by himself at all. DH thinks he'll be brushing his till at least 8.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:54 AM on Oct. 22, 2009