If you think you lead a busy and exciting life, you should be a kid again. In addition to school, family time, hanging out with friends, homework and video games, kids are learning how to take care of themselves in new ways every day.
There are many skills and tasks that you teach your children. Taking care of their teeth and brushing them at least twice a day is a good example. This is no small feat, however, considering that brushing their teeth is often at the bottom of their list of things they need to do. Remember, kids are busy too.
Besides, most kids hate brushing their teeth, even if they have plenty of time to get the job done.
When it comes to your child’s teeth, it is very important that they learn how to properly care for them. This is important because you don’t want your children to suffer cavities and other dental issues. It is also important because we know there is a direct correlation between oral health and other health issues.
It might take time, effort and a little creativity to get your children to brush their teeth on a regular basis. But the rewards are great when they figure it out. River Valley Pediatrics, your pediatric clinic in New Braunfels, offers tips to get your kids to brush their teeth.
Tell a Story
We are willing to bet that you have a lot of stories that you could tell your children. You should save those stories and only tell them while the kids are brushing their teeth. If you don’t have any good stories to tell, read them a book while they are brushing their teeth. No doubt your kids will giggle and laugh when you are reading to them or telling them a story. They will have a great time.
In fact, it will get to the point when the kids actually look forward to brushing their teeth.
Offer a Reward
Every time your children do a great job brushing their teeth without complaining, you can reward them with a cool sticker. Kids love stickers. If they brush their teeth twice a day for an entire week without a complaint, give them a bigger reward. Perhaps you could take them to the store to buy a comic book. Take them to the dollar store and let them pick out three items.
Brush to Music
Add a little groove to the brushing routine. When the children are getting ready to brush their teeth, crank up some great tunes for the occasion. Throw down some sick tunes and encourage the kids to bust a move or two. Dance around the bathroom while they brush their teeth and don’t stop brushing until the music stops.
Try a Different Toothpaste
When you visit your grocery store, you will notice that there are shelves of toothpaste choices. Take your children to the store and let them pick out the toothpaste of their choice. They might get excited about using a toothpaste with their favorite cartoon character on it. They might also get excited about brushing their teeth with their tube of bubble gum flavored toothpaste.
We prefer watermelon flavored toothpaste.
Be a Test Dummy
This might be a bit uncomfortable, but nobody told you being a parent was going to be all fun and games. And let’s hope you have a little acting skills.
Letting your kids brush your teeth for practice might help pique their interest in the task. If you are having lots of fun while they are brushing your teeth, they are more likely to think brushing their teeth is fun as well.
Lead By Example
You have seen a little girl watching her mother as she goes through her skincare routine or watched a little boy watch in fascination as dad shaves. This is the same approach that should be taken when you brush your teeth.
Have your kids watch you while you brush your teeth. Remember to smile because brushing your teeth is fun. You could hum a catchy tune as well. When you are brushing your teeth in front of the children, make a point to use exaggerated gestures and show them each step of the process. Make sure you brush your tongue and don’t miss the teeth in the back.
If your child needs a routine checkup, give River Valley Pediatrics and call.