Every parent knows that it’s often difficult to get kids to do what’s good for them. Whether it’s eating their vegetables or washing behind their ears, sometimes your little ones just don’t want to cooperate. Brushing and flossing are no exceptions. Any pediatric dentist in Denver will tell you that good at-home dental care is crucial, but it doesn’t have to be a daily struggle. Help make brushing fun for your child with the tips below to start building a good, lifelong habit.
Get a Neat Toothbrush
Every kid has a favorite cartoon character. There’s such a large selection of kids’ toothbrushes on the market that finding one with your child’s choice won’t be difficult. From bubbly princesses to Ninja Turtles to panda bears, you’ll see just about every theme. Some toothbrushes even light up or glow in the dark.
Make your child’s toothbrush more personal by writing his or her name on it, or naming the toothbrush itself. Your child will get excited when it’s time to use Pete the parakeet or Carl the crocodile. They’ll start to see brushing as more of a treat than a chore. When it’s time for a new toothbrush, let your child pick the next one, whether they want to stay with the same character or try something new. Remember, you should replace your child’s toothbrush every three to four months.
Try Tasty Toothpaste
Although the vast majority of toothpastes are still mint, there’s a variety of other flavors available. A lot of these are marketed towards kids, so you’ll find many fun and colorful choices. A few examples are bubblegum, watermelon, cinnamon, and strawberry. Some even come with sparkles. Whatever toothpaste you select, make certain it contains fluoride to help strengthen and repair young teeth. Also, be certain that the toothpaste has the American Dental Association’s (ADA) seal of acceptance.
Even though it’s vital for healthy teeth and gums, flossing isn’t much fun—even for adults. One way to make the experience better for your kid is to try children’s flossers. Using a flosser with a handle instead of traditional dental floss makes it easier for little fingers to hold and navigate between teeth. Also, kids’ flossers come in fun shapes and bright colors, and your child can pick their favorite. Like toothpaste, you can purchase floss in different flavors, including bubblegum and berry.
Brush to a Song
Pediatric dentists in Denver usually recommend that kids brush for at least two minutes. Even this brief amount of time can be tedious for a child. To make the time fly, play your child’s favorite song or read them a short story. You might even consider singing for your child as they brush.
Some kids’ toothbrushes even have a song player built in. Since this is usually only one or two tunes, you might consider a smartphone app instead. Several oral care companies offer free apps designed to let kids listen to music or play games while they brush.