TIPS FOR BRUSHING
You know how important brushing your teeth is for the prevention of serious oral health issues such as tooth decay and gum disease. Brushing at least twice a day is essential for your child as well. However, getting your child to the bathroom sink to brush their teeth in the first place can be a bit of a challenge. We at National Dental Williston Park, we have compiled a list of tips to help get your little one motivated, and help them to keep their mouth healthy.
Let Them Choose
When you need to buy a new toothbrush, you most likely just go to the pharmacy and pick out a toothbrush without much thought. Have you ever taken a look at the toothbrushes for children? If so, you’ve probably noticed a vast array of bright colors and popular cartoon characters. Even if you choose one you believe your child will love, they still may not use it. Instead, bring your child with you to pick out their toothbrush. Because they were given the freedom to choose their brush, they will be more likely to use it regularly.
Turn on Some Tunes
Your child needs to brush for two full minutes, just like you. However, to a child, 2 minutes can feel like an eternity. They may try to rush their brushing. Staring at the clock is no fun. Why not add some fun music to the task? You can find lyrics for songs about brushing online. Most are sung in tune with other popular kid’s songs. You can also download apps on your smartphone.
Read a Book
There are books on just about every subject to help kids learn about different things in life. There are even books on the importance of brushing your teeth, and the proper way to brush them. These books contain fun characters and easy to follow stories. Pull one of these books off the shelf before it’s time to brush.
Start a Sticker Chart
Most kids love stickers. Why not try a sticker chart? Every time your child brushes their teeth, let them add a sticker to the chart. When they have filled up an entire week, provide a reward. It does not have to be anything tangible. Instead, let your child pick the movie for family movie night. Alternatively, you can opt to let your child hang on to their rewards and trade them in at the end of the month for a trip to the local museum.
Your child watches you closely and pays attention to everything you do (even if it doesn’t seem like it). If they see you brushing your teeth twice a day, every day, they will be more likely to see the habit as normal and be more willing to brush themselves. However, brushing can be boring, so brush with your child. Show them the right amount of toothpaste to use. Show them how you brush your teeth. For younger children, you may have to go over their teeth a second time, but letting them practice is important. Most children can brush independently by the age of 6 or 7, but they should still be monitored (from a distance) until about the age of 11.
With proper brushing at least twice a day, your child will be set on the path for a healthy mouth that will last a lifetime. For more information or more tips on how to get your child to brush, call National Dental Williston Park today at (516) 686-9780.