Helpful Pediatric Dentistry Tips!

Tips To Help Your Child Brush Their Teeth

by Dr. Steve Whittemore, D.D.S. | Published January 15, 2018

Getting young kids to make a habit out of brushing their teeth twice a day can be a tricky task. Some children think it’s boring, while others may actively dislike it or refuse to brush. Good news! Encouraging your children to brush their teeth doesn’t have to be a nightly argument; our professionals at Pediatric Dentistry have some tips that will help transform teeth brushing from a boring chore into a fun habit for your kids.

Model Good Brushing Habits

Younger kids tend to want to be more like adults, and look to the adults in their lives for behaviors they can mimic. Make one of those behaviors brushing your teeth! If you brush your teeth when your kids do, not only will they get a chance to spend time doing something grown-up with you, but you will also have a chance to give them some pointers and make sure they are brushing for long enough so that their pearly whites stay healthy.

Turn it Into a Party

A lot a children may be hesitant to brush their teeth because they feel like it’s taking them away from other fun activities, like playing a video game or watching their favorite TV show. Make brushing part of the fun by setting a timer for two minutes in the morning and at night and putting on your kid’s favorite song or video. The two of you can even dance around, as long as they are brushing for the full time! You can even plan a different song, video, or dance for each day so that your child doesn’t feel like brushing their teeth is a boring part of their day.

Let the Kids Choose Their Own Toothbrushes

If your child is able to have more ownership of how their daily brushing goes, they might be less likely to drag their feet when the clock nears bedtime. Go to the store together and let your child choose the color and style of toothbrush (a soft brush is recommended for kids and adults alike). If you’re willing to spend a little more, an electric toothbrush would also be a great choice, especially if it features a brushing timer that will tell your child when they can stop brushing. Check out the toothbrushes designed specially for kids at your local store or pharmacy and see what catches your child’s eye!

Create a Reward System

If the glitz and glamor of choosing a cool toothbrush and brushing to music aren’t enough to prompt your child to brush on time, consider creating a reward chart where they can mark off each time they brush in the morning and at night, and at the end of the week they can have a special treat, dollar store toy, or something else to show them that their habit is paying off!

If these tricks don’t get your child a little more excited about brushing, contact us! Pediatric Dentistry of Central Iowa specializes in making sure your little ones take good care of their teeth. Consulting with a child dentist will give you an idea of where to start so that your child is set up for good, lifelong oral hygiene habits. We also have a teeth brushing guide for parents whose children are too young to brush on their own yet.

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