Dental health for children

Children under 16 (and 17 and 18 year olds in full time education) get free access to NHS dentists, so there is no excuse not to visit a local dentist.

You can download and print off the healthy smiles leaflet, a helpful resource which gives a tooth-brushing chart and tips on maintaining healthy teeth.

Sadly, children in Brent have very poor oral health. On starting school, 46 percent of children have at least one decayed, missing or filled tooth.

Here are some top tips to look after your children’s teeth:

  • baby teeth are also important to guide adult teeth into position in the mouth
  • brush teeth twice per day with fluoride toothpaste – especially at bedtime and at one other time in the day
  • bedtime brushing is important as it allows the toothpaste to work whilst your child is asleep
  • start to brush as soon as teeth appear, usually around the age of six months of age
  • fluoride information can be found on the toothpaste packet
  • use a smear of 1000 ppm fluoride toothpaste for under 3 year olds
  • use a pea sized amount of a family (1350 ppm or above) fluoride toothpaste for over 3 years olds
  • encourage the child to spit out and do not rinse the mouth out with water as this will wash away the fluoride toothpaste that strengthens the tooth surface
  • reduce the amount and frequency of sugar and sugary drinks consumed and use sugar free medicines
  • help and supervise your child(ren) with toothbrushing up to the age of at least 7 years which may be later for children with additional needs.