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5 Creative Ideas for Getting Your Young Children to Brush, Floss, and Take Charge of their Own Dental Care

It can be difficult teaching your child good habits, especially when it comes to personal hygiene. This is especially true of dental health, and particularly with young kids. When motivating your young children to brush, floss, and take charge of their own dental care, you might need to employ some creative tactics. If you are looking for some inventive techniques for getting your kids to take care of their teeth, try a few of the following tricks:

5 Creative Ideas for Getting Your Young Children to Brush, Floss, and Take Charge of their Own Dental CareThe Buddy System

One good way to get your child excited about brushing their teeth is to put them in charge of the dental care of a toy, doll, or object they hold dear. When it is time to brush teeth, your child will be able to practice on the toy, and make sure that they receive necessary dental care. Then, the child can take care of their own hygiene as well. After all, they wouldn’t want to set a bad example for their teddy bear, right? You can even get a small toothbrush for their doll or stuffed animal, so that brushing their teeth together can be a daily ritual.

The Reward System

A toothbrush is a thoroughly unexcited tool…unless it is covered in stickers! By rewarding your child with a small sticker after each time they brush, you give them something to look forward to, and they may see a toothbrush as more than a simple implement for teeth cleaning. You can also use the tactic of buying them a new toothbrush with their favorite cartoon character on it after so many days of a perfect brushing record.

Make it into a Game

Brushing your teeth with your child is a good way to make sure they get it done, and that they have an example to follow. By making it into a game, though, you may turn this chore into a fun competition. Add a little extra toothpaste to your brushes, and see whose mouth has more suds and bubbles after a certain amount of time. Children usually like to make a mess, or hold a competition, so this is a great way to turn a chore into something fun.

Distract them with a Good Attitude

Kids may be naive, but they are receptive to your actions and attitude. If you make it seem as though brushing your teeth is the most wonderful treat in the world, they may believe it themselves. Try singing a fun song or dancing in the bathroom to make a show of the whole process. If you can distract them from the actual act of brushing and flossing, they will be less likely to resist.

Cause and Effect

If you have curious children who like to know how things work, you can excite their imagination by using fun mouthwash. Find a child-approved mouthwash that colors the plaque blue (or any color), so the child can see where they need to brush, and why oral health is important. When they see less plaque, they will be motivated to brush and keep their mouth clean. According to Dr. Bryan Murray, a dentist in Raymond, this will also be helpful because it can show them all the problem areas where they need to employ better brushing techniques.

These are just a few ideas that can help your child build good dental hygiene. You can get creative in ways that will appeal to your child personally, and eventually brushing and flossing will become second nature to them. It may be a struggle at first but good habits last a lifetime, so the effort is worth the results.

Tim Esterdahl

Tim Esterdahl is the editor of IFCS blog. He is a married father of three and enjoys golf in his spare time.

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