Is it Safe to Use Baking Soda on a Toddler's Teeth?

Baking soda has been safely used as a dental care product for decades. Using baking soda on a toddler's teeth is safe as long as a few simple considerations are followed. In addition, many dental associations have approved toothpaste and tooth-powder products that contain baking soda. For parents who wish to avoid tooth care products with fluoride, baking soda may be a good alternative if you get your dentist's approval.

Supervise your toddlers' tooth brushing to reinforce good dental care habits. Credit: BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images

Safe Brushing

Using a soft-bristled toothbrush, a toddler may use a small amount of baking soda moistened with water to gently scrub away plaque and food particles. Soft-bristled toothbrushes are more effective at reaching deposits under the gum line and reduce wear and tear on the tooth enamel. The use of baking soda on your child's teeth is not harmful and can even be used if your child has sensitive gums or teeth, states Shwetha Dental Hospital.

Why It's Effective

Baking soda is an effective tooth-care product because it is mildly abrasive, which helps it remove sticky plaque and stubborn sugar deposits in the grooves of the teeth. It can be used as a natural tooth whitener as well, according to the dentists at Quarry Bend Dental. The natural freshening ability of baking soda reduces halitosis, or bad breath.

Fluoride Free

Because pure baking soda does not contain fluoride, some parents may find it preferable to fluoride products, which can be toxic if too much is swallowed, according to the National Institutes of Health. Many natural tooth-care products intended for babies and toddlers now boast fluoride-free formulas with baking soda as the main ingredient, but the American Dental Association recommends the use of fluoride-containing products for the reduction of cavities, in kids 2 and older, because fluoride seems to help prevent dental disease, states Kids Health.

Considerations

Baking soda is a food product as well as a natural cleaning product with many functions. Consuming large amounts of it may cause loose stools or diarrhea, and excessive consumption over time may lead to the formation of kidney stones. Always supervise your toddler's brushing, permitting only a dusting of soda on her toothbrush and making sure she spits and rinses. The American Dental Association recommends supervising your child's brushing until the age of 6.

references & resources
Load Comments
PARTNER & LICENSEE OF THE LIVESTRONG FOUNDATION

Copyright © 2019 Leaf Group Ltd. Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of the LIVESTRONG.COM Terms of Use , Privacy Policy and Copyright Policy . The material appearing on LIVESTRONG.COM is for educational use only. It should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the LIVESTRONG Foundation. The LIVESTRONG Foundation and LIVESTRONG.COM do not endorse any of the products or services that are advertised on the web site. Moreover, we do not select every advertiser or advertisement that appears on the web site-many of the advertisements are served by third party advertising companies.