Motivating a child to brush his or her teeth on a regular basis can be harder than it sounds. For a variety of reasons from a short attention span to sheer boredom, children will not be willing to stand still and clean their teeth twice a day. Fortunately, there are a few tips and tricks that one can use to keep their child in front of the bathroom sink for at least two minutes.
1. Play a song to dance to while brushing
While placing a timer on the counter will count two minutes of brushing, may instill a negative impression of brushing in the child. By helping the child pick out a short, two-minute song that he or she loves, the parent will help the child have a slightly more positive view of brushing teeth than before.
2. Play a two-minute video while brushing
If music or a dance party while brushing does not work for the child, then consider playing a two or three-minute video to entertain them while they brush. Help the child pick out a video that he or she likes from a music video to a cartoon. Go over proper brushing techniques and have the child use the video as a timer for how long he or she needs to keep brushing.
3. Brush together with the child
This tip may work more with younger children than with older, but can still be effective. By brushing with the child, parents can promote proper brushing techniques, verify the child is brushing and attempt to instill positive feelings with dental hygiene.
4. Let the child choose a toothbrush
This is another step that can seem simple, but can be effective. By letting the child choose a toothbrush, the child will be able to feel as if he or she has more of a say in the brushing process. In some cases, this can mean choosing a tooth brush with a cartoon character or a theme. Getting the child a toothbrush that he or she wants can help to make them enjoy brushing just a little more than normal.
5. Use a cell phone to track a child’s teeth over time
Kidshealth.org has a chart typically used in the classroom that tracks brushing and flossing. The child fills out the chart each day and turns it in at the end of each week. However, this may not be as much fun for the child as seeing the improvement over several months. With this in mind, take pictures or make a video of your child’s teeth while they brush. Save these pictures and view them with your child later on. This will help to keep the child interested in brushing and show the positive effects of long-term proper dental hygiene. If you are interested in more information on child dental care, view these pages on our website.
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At Vanek Dentistry in Costa Mesa, we will customize your treatment to match your needs and schedule. Our professional staff creates a calm atmosphere for you during the appointment and treatment process. We will identify any dental issues you are struggling with and find the best solution.
Our staff will create a calm and comforting atmosphere at the office to ease patients into the procedure. We can help prevent damage to your teeth and set you on track for a lifetime of pristine oral health. At Vanek Dentistry, your dental health is our prime concern.