You take your child to the family dentist regularly. That's the first step in making sure that she has a healthy mouth. What else can you do to make sure that your child's teeth and gums stay in top shape? At-home care should be an essential part of your little one's dental health routine. You know your child needs to brush and floss, but she's putting up resistance. You ask, you beg, and you plead for her to brush twice a day. And, nothing happens. How can you handle a child who doesn't want to brush? Check out these tips.
Some children are perfectly okay with using a toothbrush. They have no issues with the actual brushing, but when it comes to the length of time – you're in trouble. If your child does a splash and dash job of brushing her teeth, playing music can help her to use the proper technique (in other words, brushing for two minutes). Pick a song or piece of music that she enjoys and is roughly two minutes long. Pop on the song in the morning and at night, letting your kiddo enjoy the tunes as she completes a full-length brushing session.
If you have a piece of paper and a pen, pencil, or marker, you have an instant brushing chart. Draw a grid for one week, putting the names of the days on the left side. Make two more columns, one for morning brushing and one for night-time. When your child brushes her teeth (for the full length of time) she gets a sticker. Use shiny star stickers or let your child choose from a favorite theme (such as animals or characters). Some children will happily brush just to get a sticker, while others need a bit more coaxing. If your child isn't thrilled by a sticker, set up a reward system where she gets a small prize for each completed chart.
Play a Game
Your child has a whole mouth of teeth to brush. But, she's only taking care of the front ones. As she brushes play a freeze and switch game. This makes brushing fun and helps you to make sure that she's hitting all of the spots. Ask your child to start in one area (such as the top back right). She has to keep brushing that area until you call out, "freeze!" She freezes and waits for you to call out a new area to brush. Repeat until she's brushed her whole mouth for two minutes total.
At-home care is just as important as visiting the family dentist when it comes to your child's dental health. If your child just isn't into brushing, you can help her along with a few fun techniques. Whether it's listening to her favorite song, getting sticker rewards, or playing a game, she might actually start asking to brush her teeth from now on.
For more information, contact local professionals like Four Corners Dental Group Fairbanks.