March 2024

Volume 41, Issue 1

Powered toothbrushes and toothbrushing resistance in young children: a qualitative content analysis of an online parenting forum

Authors: Jennifer Kettle Zoe Marshman
doi: 10.1922/CDH_00180Kettle05


Background: Powered toothbrushes are an effective alternative to manual toothbrushes. Previous research found parents view powered toothbrushes as fun and motivating, although are less confident using them when children demonstrate resistant behaviour. Resistant child behaviour is a recognised barrier to achieving parental supervised brushing. Parents discuss strategies to address toothbrushing resistance on online parenting forums. Objective: To explore how those posting on an online parenting forum discuss powered toothbrushes as a potential solution to toothbrushing resistance in young children. Design: Qualitative content analysis of threads retrieved from the UK parenting forum Mumsnet. Results: The Mumsnet sub-forums ‘Behaviour/Development’, ‘Parenting’ and ‘Children’s Health’ were searched in April 2022. 204 relevant threads on toothbrushing resistance were identified and analysed. A further search of these threads identified posts on powered toothbrushes, yielding a sub-sample of 245 posts from 111 threads (of which 97 focused on resistant behaviour from a child/children aged under three). A coding frame was developed and included six categories: use of powered toothbrushes, descriptions of toothbrushes, positive aspects, reasons for not using, approaches to using, and discussions on Mumsnet. Posters suggested powered toothbrushes as a solution to toothbrushing resistance. Posters use Mumsnet to discuss the appropriateness of powered toothbrushes for young children. Conclusions: Powered toothbrushes offer a potential solution to toothbrushing resistance. Discussions on parenting forums can normalise the use of powered toothbrushes with under-threes. Further research on how parents and dental professionals use and recommend using powered toothbrushes with under-threes would be useful. Keywords: children, parents, oral health, internet, qualitative, powered toothbrush

£10 single article

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CDH Board 2024 1-1 Download
Acknowledgement of Reviewers 2-2 Download
Editorial: Oral Health: luxury or a fundamental human right? The necessity of introducing a dedicated oral health budget and Proportionate Universalism in Greece 3-3 Download
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The association between edentulism and progress of multimorbidity over 12 years among older American adults 39-43 Download
Is tooth loss associated with oral health-related quality of life among young men? Findings from southern Brazil 44-48 £10 single article
Planning the future of oral health care workforce: Moving beyond demographic change 49-53 £10 single article
Lessons Learned from Contact Tracing COVID-19 cases in Dental Settings in East Scotland 54-59 £10 single article
Powered toothbrushes and toothbrushing resistance in young children: a qualitative content analysis of an online parenting forum 60-64 £10 single article
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Oral microbiome research – working in partnership with Indigenous Australian communities 67-69 Download
A Critical Understanding of Inclusion in Oral Microbiome Research through the Lens of Racial Capitalism 70-74 Download
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