Oral hygiene, such as flossing and brushing teeth is very important if you want to stay free from cavities and any other gum diseases. Unfortunately for many kids, they see this as a chore, and they don’t like it.
They don’t care about all the oral hygiene instructions you give them, and they are not motivated to follow through with them.
Luckily, we have a few tricks you can use to make oral hygiene fun for your toddler. Take a look.
Get them a Special Toothbrush
Don’t just get your kid any baby toothbrush in the market. Get them one that will motivate them to brush their teeth. Make sure it has soft bristles, and it’s colorful. You could go with the one that has their favorite cartoon. Letting them accompany you to the shop is even better. It lets them feel like they have a say in their oral hygiene routine.
Make it a Family Activity
One way to keep your child interested in oral hygiene is by making sure they have a brushing buddy. Kids mimic what their parents and siblings do. Brush and floss with your kid and teach them your cool tongue brushing techniques. After brushing teeth, floss your baby’s teeth or let them do it on their watch if they’re old enough. To make this even more fun, compose a small song about oral hygiene to sing during the exercise.
Buy a Timer
You need to ensure your kid is brushing teeth the right way, which includes the amount of time they take in the process. The America Dental Exercise recommends that people brush teeth for at least two minutes. Find a colorful timer, and let your child start the timer every time they’re brushing.
Alternatively, use a brushing app that plays their favorite music for two minutes and have them brush the teeth as long as the song is singing. If you pick something your kid likes, they’ll want to stay there the whole time. Having a smile on their face will make the time pass by faster. And if the song was really good, they might look forward to next time.
Get the Right Oral Hygiene Products
Your baby may not feel very thrilled about using your minty toothpaste. But they can look forward to brushing their teeth if they’re using a watermelon or strawberry flavored toothpaste. It’s advisable to ask your dentist to recommend flavors that taste great and are healthy at the same time.
Educate to Empower
Your kid must understand why oral health is crucial, and the consequences of poor oral hygiene. Check out a children’s book that encourages dental health. You can also get them a fun video on the same.
Videos that are created to educate children on dental health care are fun and help kids relate to the topic at their level.
Reward Good Behavior
An incentive can go a long way in motivating your child to brush and floss their teeth. This is why you need to set a reward system.
For example, you can create a gold star reward system. Decorate a chart with teeth, healthy snacks, toothbrushes, and other themes to represent the days of the month. Give them a sticker to add on the chart every time they brush their teeth.
You can also track their brushing consistency together on a calendar and trade in a small gift if they brush twice every day for a month.
Whatever reward system you choose, make sure you keep your end of the deal.
Dentist Visit Surprise
Even if your kid is faithfully brushing and flossing their teeth twice every day for two minutes, regular check-ups are still necessary. Make an effort to visit the dentist every six months to keep your child’s teeth healthy and sparkling.
To make this fun, surprise your child with an outing right after an appointment. It could be taking them to watch their favorite movie or a family picnic with healthy snacks. This will ensure they look forward to their appointments.
Use the Tooth Fairy Story
Every child has different feelings about losing their teeth. Some love it as it means they’re growing while others hate it because eating food is uncomfortable. To make this easy and fun, use the tooth fairy story. Tell your kid a new tooth will grow, but the tooth fairy will come for the tooth they lose in exchange for money. Add that she only takes teeth that are in good shape. This will motivate them to take care of their teeth, and not be so grumpy about losing teeth.
There are many other fun ways you can use to motivate your kid to brush their teeth. Don’t be afraid of coming up with your ideas.
If you’re already using other tactics that are not mentioned in this article, share it with us in the comment section.
About the author
Elizabeth is a dentist who runs a very successful dental clinic. She specializes in family dental hygiene to encourage all family members to take care of their dental health. She has a blog where she teaches her followers everything related to oral hygiene topics and writes about check must have baby items.