Proper dental hygiene is important for everyone, and your kids are no exception. If they get a cavity or some other dental problem, then their health could be in jeopardy. On top of that, you’re most likely the person who is going to pay for their dental treatment down the line. Regular brushing is one of the simplest ways for your children to maintain their oral health, but getting them to actually do it can be a hassle. If you want your kids’ teeth to sparkle but have trouble getting them into a routine, then check out these seven useful ways to get your kids to brush.
Check the Toothbrush
When you tell your kids to brush their teeth, then you’d better be sure that they’re actually brushing. If the toothbrush is as dry as a bone, that means that they’re not brushing as well as they should be. If your kids say that they’ve brushed, but you think they’re lying, then call them out and discipline them the same way you would for any other lie.
Make Brushing a Condition
It’s recommended to brush at least once before breakfast and once before bedtime. Before serving breakfast, then make sure that your kids have brushed their teeth first. Maybe your kid has a nighttime routine of watching TV, playing a game, or engaging in a certain activity before bedtime. Before allowing your kids to get carried away in their fun, make sure that they’ve brushed their teeth first. Failure to brush before bed can lead to serious dental problems, and as a parent, you’ll be footing the bill.
More Brushing Means Fewer Trips to the Dentist’s Office
Sure, your children’s dentist is friendly, but in all reality, your kids would rather be anywhere else instead of their office. While your kids shouldn’t fear the dentist, it’s fine to remind them that failure to brush will result in more trips to the dentist’s office. That means that they’ll have less time to hang out with their friends or have fun at home. Kids hate being dragged to appointments, so by reminding them of the consequences of poor oral hygiene, you’re giving them more agency over their free time.
Show Them the Consequences
Your kid may be as stubborn as a mule when you try to get them to brush, and that’s probably because they don’t have a good concept of what will happen to them if they don’t brush their teeth regularly. Showing them a picture of someone’s bad teeth may put the dangers of poor oral hygiene into perspective. After all, every kid wants to grow up to be healthy and and confident, especially when it comes to their smiles. Showing them the hygienic and aesthetic repercussions of not brushing their teeth can motivate them to take better care of their oral health.
Find the Right Tools for the Job
Not all mouths are the same. Your kid may avoid brushing their teeth because they find the experience painful and unpleasant. It’s important to take a child’s feelings into consideration. Try a wide range of ADA-approved toothbrushes and toothpaste. If they’re old enough, it may even be worth letting them choose their equipment. Children are much more likely to do something if they feel physically comfortable, and giving your children more options means that they’ll find works for them.
Practice What You Preach
Your kids are watching you. Even if they don’t always make it obvious, they notice everything that you do. If you aren’t brushing your teeth regularly, they probably know. If you’re not following your own rules, then why should they? Kids look up to their parents, so it’s up to you to set the right example and practice what you preach.
Make Brushing a Routine
A habit is a powerful thing, and the best way to form a habit is with consistency. If your children go to bed at the same time every day, then you should always aim to have them brush their teeth at the same time too. After a few weeks, brushing at a certain time will become second nature, and they’re more likely to do it automatically. The less they have to think about it, the more likely they are to just do it.