Should I Use Glycerin to Clean My Baby’s Mouth?

baby sleeping with mouth open on mother's shoulder

Glycerin is a sweet and syrupy liquid used as a moisturizer, solvent, sweetening agent or pharmaceutical agent. Manufacturers use synthetic glycerin to make toothpaste creamy and sweeten cough drops. You can also find this colorless liquid in other products and medications.

You may have heard of some parents who use glycerin in their children’s oral care practices. But do dentists recommend using glycerin to clean babies’ and young children’s mouths?

How Does Cleaning With Glycerin Work?

Glycerin is a natural solvent, so some parents may want to use this generally safe cleaning agent to clean their toddler’s mouth. Many parents think it is an effective way to get rid of milk and food residue on their child’s tongue.

Do Dentists Recommend Use of Glycerin?

Despite many parents’ beliefs, dentists do not recommend using glycerin. While you can find this substance in mouthwash and toothpaste ingredients, but water is actually enough to effectively clean the gums and tongue. Also, using glycerin might risk irritating your child’s stomach.

Best Way to Clean Your Child’s Tongue

The best way to keep your child’s teeth clean is to schedule a visit to a pediatric dentist before your baby’s first birthday. During that maiden visit, a kids’ dentist in Cottonwood Heights will recommend the best way to safeguard your child’s oral health.

Meanwhile, before your baby gets her first tooth, clean her tongue and gums with a wet washcloth or a piece of clean gauze dampened with water. Wrap the soaked gauze or cloth around your dominant index finger and gently wipe the tongue. Wash the cloth or discard the gauze after cleaning. Once your child gets their first tooth, you can start using a kid-friendly toothbrush.

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Cleaning your baby’s tongue helps rid their mouth of the coating that harbors bacteria. But clean the child’s mouth the way dental experts recommend. Talk to a kids’ dentist about taking care of your child’s mouth with recommended oral care products.