How to start teaching your toddler to brush their teeth?
Kids should learn proper dental hygiene as soon as they grow their first pair of teeth. It will be up to you to crush and floss your little angel’s teeth for a while – only until your little one is old enough to do it themselves.
What guarantees do you have that your toddler will brush their teeth right and not turn it into a game – or worse, eat all the toothpaste? Here are great tips to get your toddler inline:
Make it a routine
Dentists recommend brushing after every meal, but most people limit it to two times a day: in the morning and evening. You probably grew up knowing this to be the norm because it is what your parents taught you. It is also what you should teach your toddler.
As mentioned, brushing will be your responsibility for some time after teeth start growing. Make a point of brushing and flossing your baby’s teeth twice – in the morning and before going to bed. He/she will grow up knowing that it is the norm, and this will make your work of passing over the mantle easier when the time comes.
Let them pick the supplies
Kids like new stuff and they like it even better when it looks fun and exciting. They can be surprisingly picky, considering how little they know. You may not care about the shape and color of your toothbrush, but they do. It would be best if you let them pick their own toothbrush and other supplies, depending on whatever tickles their dynamic fantasies.
Take your toddle along next time you go shopping and make a point of visiting the kids’ hygiene section. Expose them to the range of toothbrushes and encourage them to pick one – it would help if you found brands fashioned after their favorite fictional characters.
You can let your little one pick the toothpaste, too, but exercise some caution. Limit options only to kids’ toothpaste and refuse exotic toothpaste that may be harmful, no matter how sweet they taste or smell. Your toddler will swallow some toothpaste either intentionally or by mistake during the first few weeks of brushing, so it is important to ensure that the toothpaste is not toxic. Experts recommend following guidelines by the American Dental Association when looking for the safest toothpaste.
Brush together and make it fun
Most kids jump at the thought of brushing their own teeth, but some will put up a fierce fight to keep the toothbrush out of their mouths. Whatever the situation at home, it is advisable that you be present during the first couple of weeks when your toddler is learning to brush their teeth.
There are two important reasons why you should be present. Your “expertise” will be required as your toddler will make many mistakes during the first few trials. Second, you need to be there in case of any accidents. Anything can go wrong while your kid tries getting used to brushing their tiny mouths. They can swallow the toothbrush, bruise their mouths, choke on water, and more! It is not all doom and gloom, but it would help if you were present in case of an accident.
While getting your toddler to brush their teeth can be challenging, try to make the experience fun by competing or dancing along to your favorite tunes when brushing – bring your heads together and use your creativity.
Get some help
As mentioned, some kids will do anything to avoid brushing and flossing. If this is the case, consider enlisting some help. For example, find interactive video games and animations of popular cartoon characters brushing and use them to change your toddler’s attitude. You can also enlist some help from your kid’s friends.
You will also need the insight of a dentist to check whether your kids’ dental health is okay. Your little angel deserves the best, so pick only the best dentist in your area. For example, if you live in California you might search for a dentist in Palmdale, CA.
Keep his/her smile beautiful!
Dental hygiene is important in your kid’s growth and development, so bring out those teaching instincts and use these tips to guide you. Additionally, remember to follow up with your dentist for regular checkups.