May 28, 2024
How to Make Brushing More Fun

Getting toddlers to develop good oral hygiene habits can be challenging for parents. However, introducing fun elements to this non-negotiable habit can transform it from a chore to an exciting activity for your child. Here are ten enjoyable tips that will have your toddler looking forward to brushing their teeth every morning and night.

Also Read: Shark Teeth in Kids: Causes, Treatment, and When to Seek Help

1. Set a Reward System

Toddlers love rewards! Set up a reward system where they get a sticker on a chart each time they brush their teeth properly. After a certain number of stickers, give them a prize like a toy or book. This positive reinforcement will motivate them to keep up their brushing routine. You can reward them with healthy treats too.

2. Lead by Example

Brush your own teeth when your toddler does. Make it entertaining by making funny faces at yourself in the mirror. Your toddler will want to mimic you. Exaggerate brushing your molars and tongue too, so your toddler learns to clean all areas of their mouth.

3. Make Them Your Dental Assistant

Hand your toddler a toothbrush and have them pretend to be the dentist cleaning your teeth. They’ll enjoy the role reversal. Praise them for being thorough and gentle. Then switch roles and give their teeth a good scrubbing.

4. Brush to Music

Toddlers love music and dancing. Play a fun two-minute song when it’s teeth brushing time. Tell your toddler to keep brushing until the song is over so they associate the length of the song with the recommended brushing time.

5. Buy Fun Toothpaste

Get toothpaste in yummy flavors like tutti-frutti or strawberry. Let your toddler pick their favorite flavor. Changing flavors frequently will keep them interested in brushing. Look for natural toothpaste without sugar.

6. Time Your Brushing Sessions

Make a game of timing your brushing sessions to see who can brush longer. Get a sand timer or set a phone timer for two minutes. Your toddler will be engaged, trying to “beat” the timer. Praise them if they brush for the full duration.

7. Foster Independence

Give your toddler a sense of maturity by telling them brushing is a grown-up activity. Say you trust them to brush their teeth on their own in the morning and before bed. Supervise to ensure proper technique, but let them do the brushing to build confidence.

8. Buy Supplies Together

Take your toddler with you when buying their toothbrush and toothpaste. Let them pick their favorite color toothbrush and toothpaste flavor. This gives them a sense of ownership and excites them to use their special brush daily.

9. Schedule a Dentist Visit

If your child is awed by their pediatric dentist, leverage that. Have the dentist demonstrate how to brush properly on a model. The white coat authority makes them more inclined to listen. The dentist can provide further tips, too.

10. Make it Family Bonding Time

Brush together as a family each morning and night. Make it enjoyable quality time by chatting about your day and plans while brushing. Toddlers will look forward to it and learn it’s a family ritual.

Building a habit takes time, so have patience if your toddler resists at first. Try out these fun tips, and with regular practice, your toddler will get in the groove of brushing their teeth well every day.

FAQs

1. What are some fun ways to get my toddler excited about brushing their teeth?

Some fun ways to get toddlers excited for brushing include using sticker reward charts, letting them pick out fun toothbrushes and toothpastes, turning it into a game by timing how long they can brush, playing music or dancing while brushing, and making it a fun family activity by brushing together. Making it a consistent routine also helps.

2. How can I make my toddler brush their teeth for the full 2 minutes?

To get toddlers to brush for the recommended 2 minutes, try using a fun two-minute song or setting a timer. Make it a game to “beat” the timer by seeing if they can brush for the whole song or duration. Praise them when they brush for the full time. You can also try toothbrushes with built-in timers.

3. What kind of toothpaste is best for making brushing fun for toddlers?

Look for natural toothpastes without sugar that come in fun flavors like strawberry or other fruit flavors. Let your toddler pick their favorite flavor, and switch it up often to keep them interested. Avoid toothpastes with harsh chemicals.

4. How can I get my toddler to brush their back teeth properly?

Exaggerate brushing your own molars and tongue when you brush together so they learn to clean all areas. Use a toothbrush with a small head that lets them reach back teeth. Show images of cavity-free mouths and explain thorough brushing keeps their “smile strong.”

5. What rewards can I use to motivate my toddler to keep up their brushing routine?

Use sticker reward charts leading to prizes like new books or toys. Give healthy treats like fruit snacks or stickers after they brush well. Praise and high-fives also help reinforce the habit. After enough positive reinforcement, brushing becomes a habit they’ll do without rewards.

6. How can a dentist visit help make brushing more fun for my toddler?

If your child admires their pediatric dentist, leverage that by having the dentist demonstrate proper brushing techniques on a model. The dentist’s authority can make your toddler more inclined to listen and follow the instructions, making brushing more fun and engaging.

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