One of those necessary life skills every child needs to learn is brushing his or her teeth. With that being said, helping your child get in the habit of brushing, twice a day for two minutes, is no small feat! But don’t be intimidated. We’re here to help!
Have a Dance Party
Don’t just set a timer and supervise – make brushing an event! Crank up your child’s favorite song, and have a two-minute dance party. Videos or brushing apps may also make time fly.
Start a Routine
You may be tempted to let your child skip brushing after a long day or on vacation, but keep at it. The more second nature brushing becomes the easier it will be to make sure your child is brushing.
Reward Your Child
What motivates your child? If it’s stickers, make a reward chart, and let him or her add one every time they brush. If he/she is a reader, let them pick out the bedtime story. Rewarding your child will make them excited to brush their teeth.
Ease Into It
As your child gets old enough to brush their own teeth, take turns with them in the bathroom. Begin by brushing your child’s teeth first, and then have them repeat what you just did. By gradually increasing the time your child spends brushing their teeth, you ease them into independent toothbrushing without a struggle!
Use a Character to Tell a Story
Who is the character your child loves? Many children’s shows and books have stories about brushing. In fact, experts say using something relatable, like a story, is a great way to get reluctant brushers to participate. Watch and read them together, so when it’s time to brush you can use that character as an example.
You can also try letting your child practice brushing their stuffed animal’s teeth.
Show Them the Consequences of Not Brushing
Sometimes a little bit of fear can be healthy. Find pictures of children with cavities, or a youtube clip of a child getting a cavity filled. These are real life scenarios that will help you educate your child of the potential consequences of failing to brush their teeth.
Let Them Pick Out Their Toothbrush
Let your child pick out their own toothbrush and toothpaste! Choosing a character toothbrush might make brushing more fun. Luckily fluoride toothpastes come in a variety of flavors and colors to please everyone.
Set a Good Example
When it comes to teaching your child good oral hygiene, you have to practice what you preach. It is proven that your child emulates everything you do! So if your child sees you brushing your teeth, they’ll be more likely to want to brush their own. For added fun, pretend to be a mirror the next time you and your child brush together and encourage them to copy your every move!
How do you get your child to brush their teeth? Tell us in the comments below!