Is It Possible to Make Tooth Brushing Fun for Kids?
If you have young children then it’s probably sometimes a struggle to get them to clean their teeth properly. A recent survey by a dental health plan company found more than a third of American children brush their teeth less than once a day. Nearly half of the caregivers and parents surveyed admitted their children brushed their teeth for less than a minute at a time, when dentists recommend at least a couple of minutes twice a day. It’s not easy getting children to do something they don’t want to, but tooth brushing is extremely important so what can you do to make it more enjoyable?
Make Tooth Brushing into a Game
It can help to make the whole thing into a bit of a game, especially if your child is still young enough to need their teeth brushed for them. Even something as small as allowing them to squeeze out the paste onto the brush before you begin tooth brushing can help them feel more involved in the whole process. However make sure they don’t squeeze out too much. Another thing that can help is to set up a calendar and to buy some gold stars or stickers that can be stuck on every time they do their tooth brushing or allow you to clean their teeth for them.
Do Your Tooth Brushing at the Same Time
If your child is brushing their teeth on their own but still needs supervision, then why not clean your teeth at the same time? Get them to copy your movements so they develop the habit of cleaning all areas in their mouth. You could even let them clean your teeth before returning the favor.
Get Them Involved
You can also get them involved with choosing their toothbrush and toothpaste. Children will be far more invested in the whole process if they have been able to pick out a toothbrush that really appeals to them, and flavored toothpaste that they like. You may want to purchase an electric toothbrush for them as these generally include built-in timers that indicate when 30 seconds have passed, telling them it’s time to move on to the next section of their mouth. Alternatively you could just purchase a small egg timer, and it’s possible to find various novelty shaped timers that they can use in the bathroom.
Ask Us for Advice
If it is a real struggle getting your child to brush their teeth or allowing you to do tooth brushing for them, then talk to your pediatric dentist at Kids Dentistry Center. Our pediatric dentists have lots of experience in teaching young children to look after their teeth. We can also gently explain why it’s so important to have a beautifully clean mouth. We can offer advice on the different types of dental floss to use, as well as techniques for flossing.
Even though it might be difficult to get them in the habit, the best time for your child to brush is first thing in the morning and last thing at night. The reason for this is because less saliva is produced during sleep, and if you go to sleep with a dirty mouth then it increases the risk of tooth decay and gum disease as saliva helps to wash away plaque bacteria.
Kids Best Dentist Brooklyn NYC
Dr. Marina Krepkh
7708 4th Avenue 1st floor
Brooklyn, NY 11209 (Bay Ridge)