Taking care of your toddler’s teeth can be a challenge for any parent, but it’s important to instill good dental hygiene habits early on. Brushing their own teeth regularly is a one of the good habits and great way to keep their teeth and gums healthy and strong. But convincing a toddler to brush their teeth can be a daunting task. Luckily, there are plenty of fun and creative ways how to get toddler to brush teeth.
From tooth-brushing games to teeth-friendly snacks and rewards, following are eight fun ideas will help encourage your toddler to brush their teeth regularly. Plus, they’ll love taking ownership of their dental hygiene routine, giving you a much-needed break from the daily tooth-brushing battle.
Importance of brushing teeth regularly
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends toddlers start brushing their teeth with toothpaste once they have their first tooth (around 6 months old). This is because tooth decay or “baby bottle tooth decay” (also known as early childhood caries) is most prevalent when a child’s teeth first come in. This can be prevented by brushing teeth with plain water, but not everyone uses this method.
Once baby teeth are fully in, they should be brushed twice daily with a very soft toothbrush and a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. The amount of toothpaste should be for the size of the toothbrush. This ensures that toddlers aren’t swallowing excess toothpaste, which could lead to stomach aches. Using too much toothpaste doesn’t add any value. When it comes to brushing your teeth, it’s important to start early. Brushing at a young age gives your child’s teeth the best chance to stay healthy and strong. It also helps them develop good brushing habits for the rest of their life.
8 Fun ways on how to get toddler to brush teeth
Make brushing teeth a game
The best way to how to get toddler to brush teeth is to make them look forward to this daily dental hygiene routine. If possible, try brushing their teeth first thing in the morning before they eat or drink anything. This way, their fresh breath will last all day long. If your toddler doesn’t like to brush their teeth first thing in the morning, try doing it before bedtime.
Doing it before bedtime is a great idea because it can help soothe your child to sleep. You can make brushing your teeth more fun by playing a brushing teeth game or adding a tooth brush with their favorite characters printed on it. Try brushing your teeth with your child and having them imitate your brushing technique. This can make brushing teeth more interactive and fun for young children.
how to get toddler to brush teeth
Use a timer to add structure
If your toddler resists brushing their teeth, you can try adding structure to their dental hygiene routine using a timer. Adding a routine is a great way to get toddler to brush teeth. The American Dental Association recommends brushing for two minutes, so you can use this as a guide for how long your toddler should brush their teeth.
Start with 30 seconds, then increase the time by five-second intervals until your child is brushing for the full two minutes. This not only gives you a timer for how long your child should brush their teeth but also gives them a visual indicator of how long they should brush. This can help make dental hygiene more fun and less stressful for your toddler.
Brush your teeth to show them the way
If your toddler is resistant to the idea of brushing their teeth, you can model a brushing routine for them to follow. This can be a great way to show them how to brush their teeth and encourage them to imitate your technique. Modeling a teeth-brushing routine for your toddler can also help make the process less stressful for them. If possible, try doing this in front of a mirror. This can help your child see what they’re doing and provide extra structure to their dental hygiene routine. Doing this will also help you understand your child’s perspective when it comes to brushing your teeth and help incorporate healthy habits.
Get them their own toothbrush
A toothbrush that’s just for them can be a fun and special way to encourage your toddler to take part in dental hygiene. There are plenty of fun and creative toothbrush designs you can choose from, like colorful designs, favorite characters, electric toothbrush, or even ones that play music while your toddler brushes their teeth. Giving your child their toothbrush can help make brushing their teeth a more enjoyable and special experience for them. Plus, having their toothbrush is a great way to encourage them to brush their teeth regularly without being prompted or supervised.
Make tooth brushing fun and entertaining
If you have a reluctant toddler who doesn’t want to brush their teeth, try making the process more fun and entertaining for them. Try singing a special song while brushing their teeth, playing a game that involves brushing teeth or reading them a story while brushing their teeth. Anything that can make brushing your teeth more enjoyable for your child is a great idea. Make the whole process of brushing time fun.
Offer rewards or incentives
There are lots of ways you can reward your toddler for brushing their teeth regularly. Some ideas include letting them choose a new book from the library, getting a special sticker, having a special nap time or reading session with you, or getting extra time on their favorite gaming system. Rewards can be a great way to encourage healthy oral care habits in toddlers. You can also offer incentives like small prizes or a reward chart where your toddler can earn a sticker each time they brush their teeth.
Make tooth brushing part of their daily routine
Teaching your toddler to make dental hygiene part of their daily routine is a great way to help get toddler to brush teeth. Try brushing your teeth with your child during their bedtime routines to start. Then, make brushing their teeth part of their daily routine by brushing their teeth first thing in the morning. This can help your toddler get in the habit of brushing their teeth regularly. Having a daily routine when it comes to brushing their teeth can be helpful for toddlers who are just learning to brush their teeth. It can help them stay consistent with this daily dental hygiene routine.
Make tooth brushing part of mealtime
Brushing teeth can be a routine that your toddler and you can do together during mealtime. This can be a great way for you and your child to bond during mealtime. It can also encourage your child to brush their teeth more regularly and make the process of brushing teeth part of their daily routine. Try brushing your teeth after each meal as part of a family routine.
Brushing teeth is an important part of dental hygiene, no matter what age you are. The earlier you instill good, consistent dental hygiene habits in your toddler, the better their oral health will be in the long run. When it comes to brushing your teeth, you can use a variety of different methods and ideas to encourage your toddler to brush their teeth regularly. From making the process fun and entertaining to playing a game or offering rewards, these ideas will help get your toddler to brush their teeth on a daily basis. It is important to teach your little one to take care of their teeth.
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