Make It Fun
Brush, brush all day long Brush, brush while I sing this song Gonna make them sparkle, gonna make them shine Gonna brush my teeth all the time
If you and your child can carry a tune, you could sing a brushing song together to get them ready. That's just one example of the many things you could do to make brushing more fun. You could also try the following ideas:
- Time it:
- Use a mini hourglass from a board game to give the child a visual representation of how long to brush
- Game mode:
- The bad guys are invading their teeth and you must brush them away to save yourself from the evil Dr. Cavity — or whatever gets them to open their mouth willingly.
- Reward them:
- An extra book during storytime, staying up 15 extra minutes, or perhaps another episode of their favorite animated underwater adventure series are good examples of little rewards that can give them an incentive to brush with a smile.
- Let them brush:
- It may be time to take the brushing training wheels off and relinquish the brushing rights to your child while you monitor and make sure they brush long and thorough enough.
- Watch and learn:
- Find some examples of their favorite on-screen characters brushing to motivate them to brush like they're a shark, cowboy, or ice queen.
The ADA has a whole list of fun things to entice your child to brush as well. The key is to put yourself in their little shoes and cater the experience to your individual child. You know them best, so do what best suits them.
This may seem like a lot of work to get your toddler to brush their teeth, but it's for a good reason. It's to keep your child's teeth clean so they avoid tooth decay and cavities. And that means brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and regular checkups with your dentist. Yes, it's easier said than done, but that's the life of a toddler parent in a nutshell. There's no step-by-step guide for that. There is, however, a guide above for getting them to brush. Hopefully, it's a fun and rewarding experience for you both.