Safety and Personal Care
Give Those Teeth a Little TLC
Up until this point, you've most likely been brushing your child's teeth for him. If not, get started, because it's very important to begin dental care from a young age. As soon as those first teeth emerge, they can be brushed, gently and with a special child-safe toothpaste (i.e. one that can be swallowed, as teething children don't know how to spit out toothpaste). Between the age of three or four, your child may start wanting to brush his own teeth. You'll know if he's ready if he can spit and is coordinated enough to control the toothbrush. While you can encourage him to give it a try, at this age most children aren't really effective at brushing their teeth and won't be until about six years old. However, practice makes perfect, and taking a hand in his dental care will contribute to his independence. Try a compromise: let your child brush in the morning, for example, while you continue to do the evening brushing.
Has your child achieved the following Personal Care and Safety milestones yet? If yes, check off all of the skill(s) he has already mastered to date.