Battle Of The Brush: Teeth Brushing With Toddlers
It’s not easy to get little kids to brush their teeth. When they’re really small, you’ll have to brush for them, and sometimes that’s like wrestling with an octopus. So how do you help your kids keep their teeth clean?
Offer a choice
Give a child a choice, and they feel in control. Let your child choose the toothbrush and toothpaste. If they seem reluctant, pick a new one for yourself but lament over how you wish grownup toothbrushes had Paw Patrol on them. It works like a charm.
Get your teeth an extra brushing by letting your child brush with you. Kids love to do as we do so if your child sees you brushing your teeth, she’ll be more likely to jump on the tooth-brushing bandwagon. Try doing a race too and let her win. Kids love the stuff. Use older siblings to your advantage too and you’ll turn this chore into something they want to do.
Don’t expect the world
Your child is not going to be a master tooth-brusher right off the bat. Resist the urge to critique. You’ll only scare her from brushing her teeth. She’ll learn how to brush better when she gets bigger. Focus on getting your child to do the brushing and that’s all.
Make food healthier
That being said, with a so-so brusher on the loose, you’ll need to be vigilant with food and drink for your child’s oral health. Stay away from sugary things as much as possible and try to get your child to eat healthier foods for snacks and meals to keep things balanced.
Show them what it looks like to not care for your teeth
If you know someone that didn’t take care of their teeth, like a grandparent, who is willing to be your example, then ask them to talk to your child. If not, you can find pictures of teeth that weren’t cared for. Don’t be too overzealous or it will backfire. The goal is to show your child what can happen when you neglect caring for your teeth and you don’t see the dentist regularly.
Find the right dentist
Take your child to a paediatric dentist. They know how to work with small children to make them feel comfortable while caring for their teeth. Ask for references from your friends to find the right dentist for your child.
Praise their efforts
When your child brushes her teeth without a fight, be sure to praise her so she’ll be inclined to keep doing it. Tell her how clean her teeth look and how fresh her breath smells too.
Above all, be patient. Kids will learn to overcome any obstacle as long as we remain patient with them.