Dentists will be the first to tell you that most children do not care about the reason why brushing or flossing is important. They are unlikely to care about the science behind it as well.
Getting kids to do something that’s healthy and good for them can be a bit of a struggle, but thankfully we came armed with plenty of ideas.
If you have something that worked particularly well with your kids, leave a comment under the article!
Brush Teeth with Kids
The dentist experts recommend to their parents to lead by example by brushing their teeth with children.
Not only does it provide the perfect environment for instructing your children, but you will have the time to incorporate brushing tips that help you establish oral health because of a set routine together.
Record Their Efforts
Kids love keeping track of their achievements, better even if they can compete with their siblings. Make brushing teeth fun with a reusable chart like this one.
Show them YouTube Videos
YouTube has dozens of how-to brush videos that help parents teach their children about the importance of brushing. The videos are also short, so it covers the basics while not taking long to teach the lesson. They are also cartoonish, so your child will respond well to the optics. Here are two videos dentists use in their offices to teach kids technique:
- How to Have a Bright Smile by Colgate
- Why We Brush Our Teeth by SciShow Kids
Use a Kid-friendly Toothbrush and Toothpaste
Dentists recommend to parents to buy an electric toothbrush with their children’s favorite characters. Companies like Colgate advertise the power of kid-friendly electric toothbrushes and toothpaste because they know that children love them.
Electric toothbrushes are easier to handle, so they are ideal for smaller hands. Kids also associate brushing with Disney and movie characters to influence oral hygiene.
To get a better understanding of what happens at the dentist’s office, it’s a great idea to buy some toys that will let your little one become a dentist himself or herself.
A simple playdough set like this one can ease off the initial fear ahead of the first visit.
Use Books That Tell Tooth Brushing Stories
There are countless children’s books that tell an interesting story. Dentists use books in their waiting room, but parents can download free toothbrushing books online. It is an ideal way to promote brushing and reading.
It also makes for an ideal bedtime story to teach kids the importance of it as the instructions and kid-friendly language that help them understand oral health. Brushing books will teach parents the language to use with kids.
Choose a Kids-Friendly Dentist
Not all dentists are the same. Some may have better kids skills than others and you can also find a specialty kids-only dental practices. If possible, ask for recommendations for other parents or do an independent research if you don’t feel like your own dentist will be a good fit for your kids.
The preparation starts at home. Make the whole process a smooth ride by following the recommendations above so kids have fun when brushing, flossing and rinsing their mouths.
The first visit to the dentist will then go down with a breeze and less tears.