8 Tips to Help Make Brushing Fun for Kids May 12, 2021
Brushing your child’s teeth, or making sure he or she brushes them, is not easy. Through all the hustle and bustle of daily routines, your children’s brushing sometimes get shortened, flossing gets skipped, and appointments get pushed back. We understand these things will happen, but proper oral care is still important.
Are you having trouble getting your kids to practice proper oral hygiene? You are not alone. Here are some fun and creative tips you can use to help teach your children the importance of good oral care.
Lead by example. Your children idolize you and are paying attention more than you realize. If they see you practicing good oral hygiene habits, they are likely to follow suit. This includes brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and regular dental visits. If necessary, brush your teeth with them, especially in the morning.
Educate them. We love to go over proper hygiene with your children, but the lessons learned at the dentist go only so far if they are not repeated at home. Telling your children the dangers of tooth decay, gum disease, and cavities will get them cleaning.
Practice makes perfect. We find that a good way for children to make brushing and flossing more playful is to… well, play! Let them practice brushing techniques on their favorite baby doll or action figure. If Captain America brushes, everyone brushes.
Let them decide. Go to the oral care aisle, find toothbrushes and other accessories that are ADA approved and let them pick their favorite one. It will make the experience more personal and will give them a sense of independence.
Make it fun. Yes, brushing and flossing can be fun! Turn some music on: dancing and singing can make the experience even more enjoyable for little ones. A bit of dancing doesn’t hurt for the adults either.
Set a timer. Make sure they brush for two minutes and make it easy for them. Try playing their favorite song for two minutes so there is no second guessing.
Try different flavors. Don’t be afraid to mix things up. If your children aren’t a big fan of a certain flavor or variety of toothpaste, try a different one. Making them use a certain kind they don’t like can give the whole experience a bad taste.
Use positive reinforcement. Now, you don’t need to run out to the toy store every time the kids brush their teeth. But, compliments and small tokens of appreciation can really boost their esteem when it comes to oral care. Sticker charts and gold stars are always a great option.
Bonus Tip! Are your kids afraid of the dentist?
Some children have a terrible fear of visiting with the dentist. Although we try to make them feel as comfortable as possible, sometimes this doesn’t always relieve the anxiety. Consider playing dentist at home and doing a mock visit before so they feel more prepared.
We hope these fun tips may help you encourage good habits at home. Contact us today to make an appointment and feel free to ask any questions you may have about healthy teeth and gums for your children.