Few young children will regularly brush their teeth without daily reminders from Mom and Dad.
Encouraging children to brush their teeth without being told is not always an easy task, but it is an important one. Dental health is an integral part of a child’s overall physical health. If daily brushing is like pulling teeth for your family and you’re discouraged, try one of the following ways to teach your kids to take care of their pearly whites.
- Be a model parent. You are your child’s first teacher and role model. Let them see you brush and floss daily, as children naturally want to copy their parents. Your commitment to dental hygiene will encourage them to brush as well.
- Make it fun. Sometimes, all it takes is a toothbrush with a favorite character or one that lights up and plays music to encourage a child to brush. Singing special songs can also make the ritual a lot more fun, especially if you don’t mind getting a little silly.
- Create a rewards chart. Motivate your kids to brush their teeth with a rewards chart where they can keep track of their daily brushing and earn rewards for consistently completing the task. They can be found online or you can easily create your own.
- Use a timer. If your child is not brushing his or her teeth as long as you prefer, then use a kitchen timer to help them. Inform your child that once the buzzer rings they can stop brushing. Three minutes twice daily is the appropriate time length for brushing teeth properly, but you may need to build your child up the full three minutes if they get sidetracked or bored. The use of a battery-operated toothbrush such as a Spinbrush can lengthen brushing times and add a sense of fun with personalized stickers.
Teaching good dental hygiene in children and young adults takes patience, but with these tips should get you on the right track to healthy beginnings. At Healthy Smiles of Georgia in Alpharetta, GA, we are committed to making sure your entire family has a mouthful of healthy teeth for years to come. Don’t hesitate to contact us for questions or concerns regarding your family’s dental health.