Brushing your toddler’s teeth can be an exasperating task, but it needs to be done. Does clenched teeth and a shaking little head seem familiar? Don’t worry, there are many parents all over the world that are experiencing the same situation. Fortunately, there are ways to make this routine more enjoyable and a way to bond with your child.
First, there are a few things you should consider before starting. Make sure you are using toothpaste that is meant for children. This type of toothpaste is gentler on sensitive taste buds and is safe to swallow. It is also available in different flavours which makes it more fun and tasty for your toddler. Try a few different ones and see which one he or she prefers. We do not recommend using adult toothpaste because it is too minty and harsh for a child’s mouth.
Next, make sure you use a toothbrush meant for children. These toothbrushes are designed with softer bristles and often rubber backing to protect from bumps against gums. They are also much smaller in order to fit into your toddler’s tiny mouth.
Finally, make sure you instill the habit of brushing two to three times a day. Toddlers are creatures of habit, so this shouldn’t be too hard. Keep in mind that you should be the one doing most of the brushing. However, there is nothing wrong with letting your toddler try themself if they want.
If there’s one thing that kids like to do, it’s copying what someone else says or does. This is how they learn most actions. The same applies to brushing teeth. Have your toddler stand with you when you’re brushing your teeth. It won’t be long before they will be doing it themselves.
Put on some fun music
Find a short (1-2 minutes), fun song to put on while your toddler brushes his or her teeth. Tell them to keep brushing until the song is over. Pick a song that you like and won’t mind listening to for the next few years. A fun song that comes to mind is Raffi’s song about brushing teeth.
Read books and watch videos
Something that is a part of most children’s childhood is story time. Try finding some books about brushing teeth and reading them for you toddler. It will most likely teach him or her the importance of brushing your teeth and make it seem fun.
Make brushing teeth more fun by doing it together with your toddler. This will create a bonding moment that you will look back on later and smile about. Let your toddler brush their own teeth for a few counts, then switch. Let them brush your teeth for a bit and show them how they need to move their mouth.
Use electric toothbrush
Another thing that will make tooth brushing time more fun is the use of an electric toothbrush. Most kids think this is fun and enjoy the buzzing effect. It is also a very good way of ensuring that their teeth are thoroughly cleaned.
If you have any more questions concerning the brushing of your toddler’s teeth, do not hesitate to ask one of our dentists. They will gladly give you some more tips and tricks during a dental visit with your toddler.