Help! How Do I Get My Kid to Brush Their Teeth
If you’ve got a toddler or child refusing to brush their teeth – you’re not alone. It’s common for this everyday task to quickly become your child’s least favorite. However, teeth brushing is non negotiable. To maintain proper dental hygiene, your child should be brushing their teeth twice a day. So, how do you get them to do that? Harrisburg Pediatric Dentistry has some tips.
Tips for Getting Your Kid to Brush Their Teeth
First things first, your child should learn by example. The best way to motivate your child to take care of their smile is to practice healthy dental hygiene yourself. If your child sees their parents brushing their teeth regularly, they’ll be more apt to want to practice healthy dental hygiene themselves.
Pick Out Special Toothbrush and Toothpaste
Take your child to the store or look online with you to find the toothbrush and toothpaste they want. A toothbrush or tube of toothpaste with their favorite cartoon character on it may make the brushing process more exciting and fun.
Finding the right toothpaste for your child is essential. Try multiple toothpaste flavors to find the one your child likes most. They may enjoy a strawberry or bubble gum flavor, more than a powerful mint. While it may seem costly to buy multiple tubes of toothpaste, finding a toothpaste that will get your child to brush their teeth will save you money in the long run on dental work.
It’s also recommended to pick out soft-bristled toothbrushes. Because of their growing jaws, sensitive gums, and erupting teeth, brushing can be painful to children. Soft toothbrushes will help feel less uncomfortable while brushing and kids will feel more at ease about the brushing process.
Make Toothbrushing a Game
Get your child excited to brush their teeth by turning the whole process into a game. To make sure your child brushes for the recommended two minutes, twice a day, try one of these suggestions:
- Brush away the “sugar bugs.” Encourage your child to brush thoroughly to make sure they get all of the sugar bugs off of their teeth.
- Play “beat the timer.” Set a timer for two minutes and have your child brush until the timer goes off.
- Making funny faces. See who can make the funniest faces while brushing their teeth.
Brush Each Other’s Teeth
If your toddler still needs assistance when brushing their teeth, but they don’t want to cooperate – offer to let them brush your teeth. This allows them to still feel like they’re in control while you are able to make sure they’re teeth get cleaned thoroughly.
Remove Negative Associations
If brushing teeth at night causes a disturbance in the bedtime routine, try brushing teeth after dinner and before baths and pajamas. This goes for the morning, as well. Adjust the time and moment in the usual routine when your child brushes their teeth to remove any negative associations your child may already have.
For more help getting your child to brush their teeth and maintain a healthy smile, contact Harrisburg Pediatric Dentistry. Our knowledgeable staff can help find more ways to get your child to learn to love brushing their teeth.