How to Help a Child that Hates Brushing Teeth
Sometimes kids don’t know what’s good for them (okay, let’s be honest, they often don’t)—they like to touch burning stoves, they like to climb really tall trees, they like to eat candy, and they don’t like to brush their teeth.
Are you having trouble getting your little one to brush? Most of us have been there. Thankfully, there are a few tricks you can try that will help your child grow more accustomed to the practice and eventually accept it as a twice-daily routine.
Here are some of our tried-and-true best practices for helping kids grow to like brushing their teeth:
Set an Example:
Show your children that you enjoy brushing your teeth by doing it in front of them on multiple occasions. It’s true that as parents we often go to bed long after our children, but try brushing your teeth with your kids or invite them into your master bathroom in the morning as you primp and prep for the day. You can definitely affect change by leading by example. Hey, you can even floss in front of them.
Buy Fun Toothbrushes:
Let yourself succumb to the Disney princess toothbrush your daughter has been swooning over or the superhero toothbrush your son has been begging for. This added pizzazz to the brush will often make them more inclined to use their light up toothbrush or their pink glittery brush with purple bristles.
Buy Fun Flavors of Toothpaste:
Let your children pick out the flavor of toothpaste at your local grocery store. Even if the flavor sounds repulsive to you, remember that it’s their choice. You want your kids to have involvement in this teeth brushing process because they’ll be more willing to actually brush their teeth.
Use a Timer or Special Song:
Set a measured amount of time for your kids to brush their teeth. You could put on a timer for 90 seconds or sing a special song to them as they brush. The special song works very well from our experience.
Set a Schedule:
Make brushing teeth a part of their nightly bedtime routine and morning wake up routine. Their bedtime routine could be brush teeth, go potty, and read a book—or whatever works best for your family. Children thrive off of schedule and established expectations. Pretty soon brushing their teeth will seem second nature to them and just a deeply-ingrained part of getting ready for bed.