Taking Care of Baby’s Teeth

Taking Care of Baby's Teeth

Our parenting expert, Claire Thompson, has some helpful tips on how to take care of your baby’s gums and teeth from birth through to the first year of teeth coming through!

Before first tooth appears

Babies begin to show signs of teething from approximately 3 months of age. These signs include excess dribbling, red cheeks, baby chewing on fists and becoming irritable. But unfortunately, this doesn’t mean teeth will appear any time soon!!

Each baby is unique in timing of having their first tooth pop up- even with siblings, if Johns sister got her tooth at five months, John could be waiting until ten months of age!

What IS important and should be universal for all babies, is that we begin to take care of babies gums and teeth from 4 months of age.

Cleaning baby’s gums

Before those tiny teeth appear, start good habits by cleaning babies gums using a washcloth, gauze or gum cleaner with cooled boiled water twice a day. 

Sticking to times that we would generally brush our teeth, is a good way to incorporate into baby’s routine. For example, after first milk feed in the morning, and last feed of the evening. 

The first tooth may not appear until after baby begins to wean on solids, so this is a great step to take to ensure there are no sugars/food sitting on gums

First Tooth is here!

The first teeth that appear are more than likely the bottom front teeth, also known as the central incisors.

A soft bristle brush appropriate from 0+ months is the perfect first toothbrush. 

After 6 months, we introduce a infant-safe toothpaste that contains fluoride. On the packaging, it should state the correct age “0-2 years” and we only use a grain of rice sized amount on the toothbrush, twice a day. 


•Book in to see the dentist from as early as first teeth appearing. It is a good way to desensitize the trip to the dentist if it becomes part of routine checks. 

•Try to keep sweets and treats to a minimum, not allowing it to be a daily/regular occurance. The more sugars sit on the teeth, the more likely it can rot even milk teeth!

•Have brushing at bedtime AFTER the last night feed, so milk is not sitting on teeth over night.

•Discourage having anything but milk or cooled boiled water in bottles and beakers.

•For toddlers, offer cooled boiled water throughout the day if thirsty, but keep milk or any fruit juice as part of meal times with food.