Regular brushing is important to dental health, especially when teeth are first developing. However, it can be a struggle to get kids to brush. Here are the steps children should follow every time they brush as well as some tips to make the process easier on everyone.
Show Them How to Brush
Kids don’t automatically know how to brush their teeth. If they aren’t doing it properly, they might still end up with problems. Start by showing kids the steps to brushing correctly. Re-teach on a regular basis to make sure they remember. Teach them like this:
· Use a soft bristled brush. Hold it at a 45-degree angle right at the gum line.
· Move the brush gently back and forth along every tooth’s exterior surface. Then repeat for the inside surfaces.
· Hold the brush with bristles straight up and down to brush surfaces on the larger teeth at the back.
· Brush the tongue.
Make a Routine
When creating healthy habits, it helps to have a routine. Brush teeth at the same time every day. Do it right after breakfast and right before bedtime, or at the same time as other activities you repeat every day.
Brush With Them
You’re going to brush your teeth too. Do it with your child. Go shopping and pick out new toothbrushes and toothpaste together, then start a brushing routine that involves the whole family.
Reward Good Brushing
One way to encourage good brushing is to offer a reward. Rewards can be an activity. For example, if your child brushes his or her teeth without having to be reminded, you might read a book together before bed or allow your child to stay up an extra five minutes.
Rewards can be something tangible. Put up a sticker chart that incorporates brushing. When your child brushes every day for a specified length of time, hand out a small prize.
Make It a Game
Sometimes fun is the best reward. Have a competition between two older children to see who remembers to brush teeth most frequently in a two-week period. Set a timer, crank some music, and have a two-minute toothbrush dance party.
Cobblestone Park Family Dental helps families keep their smiles healthy. Schedule an appointment today.