May 15 , 2020
Mouth bacteria isn’t really an issue to worry about if your baby’s teeth haven’t emerged yet. However, you can set a strong foundation for good oral health by gently brushing their gums. This might seem like a hasty and helicopter parent-y activity at first, but it actually comes with lots of great benefits for you and your baby.
Why Brush A Baby’s Gums?
1. It Makes Brushing Their Teeth Easier
Babies don’t always get along with the new and strange. Parents always need to prepare for some screaming and crying when they dress their kids up in new clothes or change up their diets.
Getting a baby used to a toothbrush is one of the most difficult parenting tasks ever. What should be a few minutes of brushing can turn into half an hour of wrestling with a wriggling and screaming baby. Babies can indeed get used to this activity after some time, but not without a few weeks or months of struggle on their parents’ part.
A little gum cleaning and massage will lessen your struggles with baby oral care in the future. With enough time and patience, your baby will get used to the feel of having something in his mouth. He won’t feel too afraid or anxious when it’s finally time to brush his teeth and gums.
2. It Establishes A Routine
Routine helps a baby get used to brushing and bedtime. Cleaning your baby’s gums at a set time of the day will help them know when it’s time to sleep, brush, or bathe. It will also lessen any fussing, screaming, or crying you’ll need to deal with in the future.
You can pair gum cleaning with other activities to ease your baby into a set schedule. For instance, you can clean and massage your child’s gums just before you do tummy time. That way, he’ll know when it’s time to play while lying against his stomach. You can also get your baby used to bath time by cleaning his gums before or after putting him in the tub. The possibilities are endless!
3. It Provides Comfort
The greatest treasure a baby can have is his mother’s warm and loving touch. Making skin-to-skin contact is one of the best ways to help your baby feel loved and relaxed. Skin-to-gum contact works can achieve similar results.
Pain and discomfort are problems that almost always come with teething. The best way to soothe your teething baby is to gently massage their gums. Applying a bit of pressure through your fingers will lessen the pain and pressure of teeth pushing through the gums. Doing this will also help you find out which teeth are about to come out.
When Should You Brush A Baby’s Gums?
Babies can start having their gums brushed even when they’re less than a month old. The earlier you start brushing your baby’s gums, the easier it will be for you to brush their teeth in the future. Once your baby is around 3 months old, you can start doing fun activities like massage and music time alongside gum cleaning.
Bacteria from food and milk form a film of plaque along a baby's gums. This plaque can cause painful cavities to develop on emerging teeth. Brushing a baby's gums after every mealtime is vital to good oral health.
What Should You Use?
The best materials to use for gum cleaning are a clean and moist washcloth, as well as a soft and moist gauze pad. Make sure the cloth you’ll use isn’t made with rough and itchy fabric or full of dirt. When in doubt, simply use a washcloth specially designed for babies.
How Do I Do It?
Brushing your baby’s gums can be done in a few easy steps:
1. Wash your hands with soap.
2. Dampen a washcloth or gauze pad with water. After that, wrap either material around one of your fingers.
3. Gently rub and massage your baby’s gums using your wrapped finger at least once a day. Be sure to clean both the upper and lower gums.