Even though getting your toddler to brush their teeth can be tricky, with a little determination and innovation from your side, your child will never have to have a bad dental experience. These 7 tips should make brushing your toddler’s teeth a little easier.
1. Try a countdown
Keep them motivated by using a toothbrush with a timer or an hourglass to encourage them to brush for a full 2 minutes.
2. Let them choose
Toddlers will be more willing to brush with a toothbrush – and toothpaste flavour – of their choice. The same goes for the type of toothbrush they use; let them decide if they want a manual or electric toothbrush.
3. Be a role model
Children love copying their parents’ behavior so when it comes to instilling good habits like brushing and flossing, use this to your advantage. If they see mommy or daddy taking care of their teeth, they’re more likely to do it themselves.
4. Entertain them
Brushing your teeth doesn’t have to be boring, make it a fun and playful activity. You could put some music on, make it a special activity your child does with mom or dad before bed, or turn it into a game. Some children can be persuaded to brush their teeth if you first demonstrate how to do it on a teddy bear or other plush toy.
5. Make the wash basin inviting
There are plenty of rinse cups, toothbrush holders and storage containers available in a range of colors, shapes and cartoon characters. Choose visually appealing items to make the basin look like a fun space – that will be half the battle won.
6. Friendly competition
Let there be a reward for brushing twice every day, even if it’s just a sticker or being able to watch an extra 5 minutes of TV. Most children are up for a challenge so consider making brushing their teeth twice a day into a competition between siblings or even cousins to see who can tick off all 14 in a week.
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7. Make it a routine
Don’t let brushing twice a day be optional. Instill the routine from a young age and, in doing so, save yourself lots of trouble, tears and money in the future!