We all know brushing your teeth is important to maintain the health of your mouth and teeth, which is why your children need to brush their teeth properly too. Sometimes children may have negative feelings about brushing their teeth, which is why you take steps to make teeth brushing more fun for them; causing them to look forward to brushing their teeth instead of dreading the process. Within this guide, you will find handy tips to help your child learn to enjoy brushing their teeth. For additional advice on brushing your child’s teeth, you could also contact your local dentist in Leamington Spa for advice specific to your child.
Make It A Group Activity
Children are very curious about the world around them, they learn by observing those around them. This means your child will learn from watching how you and your significant other live your lives, it is prevalent for children to want to emulate their parents and be like them. You can use this to your advantage by setting your child up with healthy habits for life, by brushing your teeth at the same time as your child you can show by example how to brush your teeth properly; you can also assist your child in brushing their teeth if necessary, the combination of learning by example and having an adult nearby when they are brushing their teeth can help children become better at brushing their teeth. Children will also better understand the importance of regularly bruising their teeth because they see you, their parent doing so yourself.
Create Games About Brushing Your Teeth
Children may be scared or apprehensive about brushing their teeth, but if you turn teeth brushing into a game you can help dissipate these negative feelings, the type of game you choose to play depends on your child’s personality and age. For a child under 10 years old, you could bring their favourite toy to the bathroom with you and brush the teeth of the toy, this can inspire feelings within your child that they are helping their toy stay healthy by brushing its teeth. Such feelings are likely to carry across to their dental hygiene habits and make them associate brushing their teeth with maintaining the health of their teeth.
Another game you can play with smaller children is walking into the bathroom and exaggeratedly looking around the room for the toothbrush, picking up items that are not the toothbrush to the amusement of your child. Your child may pick up the toothbrush and show it to you, as a result of this you can congratulate your child on their ‘discovery’. This routine adds an extra bit of fun to brushing and helps alleviate any negative feelings your child may have about brushing their teeth.
Another game you can play is to ask your child to sing a song whilst they are brushing their teeth and you have to guess what song they are singing, you can then brush your teeth and sing a song and ask your child to guess the song you are singing. This can cause a sense of positive competitiveness between you and your child, which can add more fun to brushing their teeth.
For older children who understand the negative impact role germs have on our health, you could play a game about removing the germs from their teeth. Once your child has finished bruising their teeth you can inspect their teeth and make sure there are no germs still there. This gives you a good opportunity to inspect if they are brushing their teeth properly and take action if they are not. As a result, your child will likely focus less on not wanting to brush their teeth and more on seeking your approval once they have finished brushing their teeth, meaning that they will improve at brushing their teeth. You should instil within your child the benefits that brushing your teeth regularly has on the health of their teeth, as you will not be watching them brush their teeth forever and they need to ensure that they are brushing properly.
Pick A Snazzy Toothbrush
Allowing your child to choose their toothbrush adds an extra layer of ownership to their dental health, instead of dreading brushing their teeth your children may start looking forward to brushing their teeth instead; as their toothbrush the colour or design that they have chosen. There’s even a large range of toothbrushes that have your children’s favourite cartoon, some of them even play songs and sing to your child whilst they are brushing their teeth. This can make your child associate brushing their teeth with their favourite cartoon character, increasing their excitement and willingness to brush their teeth.
You can even use a toothbrush you know your child would like as an incentive or prize when your child has done the housework or got a good grade at school; because they feel like they earned the toothbrush from doing something good they are more likely to be excited to use the new toothbrush.
Reward Your Child For Their Efforts
If your child brushes their teeth properly you can reward them with a later bedtime in the days they brush their teeth right. You could also tailor rewards specifically towards the interests and hobbies of your child, your child will then start associating rewards with brushing their teeth. This sentiment can carry on when they get older and they may be able to see the benefits of brushing their teeth easier meaning that they will likely brush their teeth to a better standard.
Make Sure Your Child Is Happy With Their Toothpaste
If your child is unhappy with their toothpaste they may be more unwilling to brush their teeth, make sure to listen to your child if they have any concerns such as them not wanting their toothpaste to be minty. You should also be using toothpaste that is appropriate for children with a lower fluoride level than adult toothpaste, as the higher fluoride level in adult toothpaste can stain your child’s teeth.
By reframing brushing your teeth from something to be dreaded to an exciting and fun bonding moment with your child you can reduce negative feelings children may have towards brushing their teeth and set them up with healthy habits for life.