3 Strategies to Encourage Children to Brush Their Teeth

Posted on: 5 March 2015

As a parent, you are the most important person in your child's world. You are their playmate, their teacher, and their protector. Taking care of your child's health is a top priority. As your child ages, it becomes more important than ever to impart upon them how important it is to take care of their oral health. Here are three strategies to encourage good oral hygiene practices for your kids.

Start tooth brushing when your child starts teething.

It is never too early to start modeling healthy behaviors for your child to pick up and turn into lifestyle choices. As soon as your child starts teething, you should get them their first toothbrush. Using warm water and a soft bristled brush, massage their gums with their toothbrush to remove harmful bacteria and stimulate their gums.

As they get older, continue to make tooth brushing and flossing an activity that you share together. By the time your child is school-aged, their oral hygiene routine will be deeply embedded in their habits and they can carry good oral health into adulthood.

Create a playlist to help your kids brush for two minutes.

Dentists recommend that toothbrushing should last for two minutes. Your child might have difficulty committing that much time to a small activity. Help them to brush for the correct amount of time by setting the activity to music. Create a playlist on your phone with songs that last approximately two minutes. These songs should be fun and upbeat in order to engage your child's attention. Your child can also help you pick some favorite songs for their playlist, making this activity interactive as well.

Let your child choose their own toothbrush and toothpaste.

Children's toothbrushes come in a variety of bright colors and some also have your child's favorite cartoon characters on them. Get your child involved in caring for their oral health by allowing them to choose the toothbrush that they get to use. This raises their engagement factor and having a toothbrush in their favorite color or with their favorite cartoon on it may also make them excited to brush their teeth as well.

Children's toothpastes come in a variety of flavors these days, from mint to cinnamon. Let your child explore which flavor is the most appealing to them; this makes them feel like brushing their teeth is less of a chore and more of a fun activity that you can do together. For more tips, contact local resources such as Southridge Pediatric Dentistry.