The dreaded chore of getting your kids to brush their teeth is a constant battle for most parents. But what if we were to tell you there are some tricks you can use to make your kids WANT to clean them? Here are 7 of them.
The statistics around Australian children and the prevalence of dental decay are scary. But often we let them off brushing their teeth because we just can’t be bothered with the drama.
However, ignoring tooth brushing won’t make it go away. In fact, the longer you leave it the more likely that your child will develop decay.
7 Tricks To Encourage Kids To Brush Their Teeth
1. Double Trouble
If you’ve got a young child who refuses to let you brush their teeth but does a poor job themselves, buy another one. No not a child, a toothbrush. They can play with one while you do the business with the other!
2. Negotiate To Get Job Done
But just make sure you’re not offering sweets or sugary treats. Maybe offer them screen time or the gift of your presence to play a board game or Lego.
3. Be Smart With Toothpaste Choice
Not all toothpastes taste the same and there are ones that are suitable for certain ages. The ones for older kids are quite minty and often disliked. Check with a dentist to see what alternative flavours there are.
4. Keep It In The Family
Why not encourage siblings to brush each other’s teeth? Or let your child brush YOUR pearly whites. This may not work well if you have children who are a bit rough or don’t get on well. But it might just get the job done.
5. Glitz And Glamour
Find a toothbrush that sings, has bright lights, dances or vibrates! Do whatever it takes to get their attention and make them want to pick it up and use.
Don’t forget: Kids need to have their teeth flossed too, but this will be up to you as most little ones tend to play with it rather than use correctly.
6. Monkey See Monkey Do
A really good way to ensure the entire family is taking care of their teeth is to brush together. Show them what you do, and encourage them to copy. Be a little silly if you want, it might make it more fun for you all.
7. Normalise It
Make it part of their morning and evening routine and make up a place for it on their pocket money or reward chart. A little bribery won’t hurt while they’re young.
Finally, if all else fails don’t push it as they’ll just become more adamant. Take a break for a day and try again. If you’re desperate you could try brushing their teeth while they’re asleep in bed!
Meanwhile, dentists tell us it’s not hard to maintain our gums and teeth; and they’re probably right. We just have to factor oral hygiene into our daily routine.
Tips To Maintain Healthy Teeth And Gums
Plague – Brush twice daily because plague can form on nonbrushed teeth within 48 hours if teeth aren’t brushed, it will then get hard and become tartar.
Toothpaste – Brush with fluoride toothpaste for two to three minutes and pay attention to the back teeth, which is mostly used for chewing – use mouthwash to rinse your mouth daily.
Flossing – This is important because it can get rid of hidden food particles under the gums that a toothbrush can’t remove, it should become a daily routine.
Tongue – Brush your tongue every time you brush teeth because if food continues to build up on the tongue it can cause unpleasant odours.
Visit dentist – Get teeth cleaned professionally every six months to make sure gum disease hasn’t set in and to make sure you’re on the right track with brushing and flossing.
For more information related to kids health, click here.