Anyone with a toddler knows that tooth brushing can sometimes end in a tantrum, but don’t give up! Baby teeth are important too, just ask the tooth fairy, or Siriroj dentist D.D.S Tipapat Attathom.
Dr. Tipapat says that the key to success is to remind yourself that you are doing the right thing for your child, even if they don’t always see it that way. Brushing twice a day will help your kids maintain healthy oral hygiene habits for the rest of their lives. Here, our tips for making tooth-brushing time fun.
1. Let your child pick their toothbrush
Spiderman, Barbie, Ben 10: giving your toddler choices and incorporating these fun characters can help make the whole experience more festive.
Put on a tooth-brushing video (there are lots on youtube, like Blippi Tooth Brushing Song, sing a song, do a funny voice, tickle their feet. If you make the process as entertaining as possible, it is likely to go more smoothly. And if they are laughing, their mouths are open and you are halfway there.
3. Take toothbrushing to go
You don’t always have to be in the bathroom; you can do it in front of a mirror in the house, or on your bed. Sometimes a change of scene can help.
4. Walk the talk
Make sure you show them how you brush your teeth too, every morning and every night. If you do it together and make it a family activity, it ends up being a shared routine.
5. Get an hourglass to time the tooth brushing
This helps by giving the kids a fun way to track the time and ensures they are brushing for long enough.
6. Reward system
Offering a sticker for each successful toothbrush session gives kids something to look forward to.
7. Game-ify it
Challenge your child to brush their teeth a little longer each night and encourage their successes. You can play a song and see how far into the song they make it until eventually you can reach two or three minutes of solid brushing.
8. Brush thoroughly
Retract your child’s cheek with your finger to properly brush the sides of their back teeth. This will help you brush more thoroughly in less time.
9. Stay away from scare tactics
It is good to explain the importance of oral hygiene and the consequences of poor oral hygiene but don’t make a visit to the dentist a punishment. The trip the dentist should be set in a positive light and be something to look forward to.
10. Take your children to the dentist
From the age of two, regular checkups are an essential part of tooth care and your dentist can help explain the importance of tooth brushing. Sometimes children take advice more seriously if it comes from an outside authority. The experts at the Siriroj Dental Center will show you more techniques for thoroughly cleaning your children’s teeth.