Did you know it only takes 21 days to make a routine a habit? If you're looking for a way to help your kids make brushing, flossing and rinsing a habit, it helps if you can establish a morning and evening brushing routine. Creating good habits can start at a young age and carry through for life.
Making the Routine Work
When you're establishing a routine for your kids, make it easy for them. When you are potty training young kids, you establish a routine of having them go to the bathroom as soon as they wake up and then again every couple of hours throughout the day. While it takes longer for some kids than it does others to be completely potty trained, it's the habit that helps. The same is true for dental care. Every morning after breakfast and every evening before bed, prompt your child to brush his teeth. It won't take too long for your kids to automatically think about brushing at those times on their own.
Encouraging the Habit
When you're creating a morning and evening brushing routine for your kids, there are dental activities you can do to make it more fun. Help your little ones look forward to brushing by making it a fun game. Sing songs with your toddler about brushing teeth to help them get excited. The Department of Health has a great selection of tooth brushing songs.
Some kids may benefit from a toothbrushing chart or other type of reward system. And of course, the tooth fairy helps all kids get excited about their teeth.
Kids learn from what they see, so if they see you brushing your teeth in the morning and evening, they'll be more likely to do it, too. While you are helping your kids develop good habits, be sure to follow up and help them with flossing and brushing. And don't forget, great dental habits are complemented by regular checkups at the dentist, so be sure to make a habit of taking your kids to see the dentist every six months!