Did you know that over 40% of children have cavities by the time they are in kindergarten? Childrens dental care is incredibly important from a young age. Those baby teeth may be temporary, but bad habits can last a lifetime. That’s why building and maintaining good dental hygiene habits can save countless trips to the dentist and immeasurable stress.
The biggest first step towards accomplishing this goal is establishing a regular brushing schedule. Getting your beloved child to brush their teeth properly can be an exhausting uphill battle. It is totally understandable to consider resorting to bribery or commands, but there are much more enjoyable ways to encourage oral hygiene for kids.
- Brush Together!
The phrase ‘monkey see, monkey do’ is a bit silly, but you might find it to hold some truth. Kids learn something every day from their parents, a lot of the time by emulating what they see mom and dad doing. Set a good example by spending quality time brushing together.
- Make A Calendar
Either draw a calendar on a whiteboard or make one from scratch. Divide each day into morning and night. When you brush together in the morning, have your child check off half the day using a colorful sticker, and do it again at night. Decide upon some (sugar free!) reward system for the end of each month.
- Keep A Strict Schedule
Bad habits are easily formed and good habits are easily broken. While this isn’t always true, at a young age it can be difficult to form good habits without guidance. If they forget to brush once a week on the same day, figure out why and help them be more consistent. If you suspect them of fibbing about brushing their teeth, don’t hesitate to perform the smell test.
- Go Toothbrush Shopping
This is always fun. Going toothbrush shopping opens up a world of colorful brushes, tasty toothpaste, fun characters, and a newfound independence. This is a wonderful way to make oral hygiene for kids exciting.
- Tell Stories
If you enjoy telling your child bedtime stories or you read together before bed, this is a great place to begin the tale. That way the story doesn’t start until they brush their teeth, and they’ll actually look forward to brushing.
The best way to avoid needing children dental services for cavities is by brushing twice every day. When your kid goes in for a pediatric dentist visit, they will be praised for their clean and perfect pearly whites, further reinforcing good brushing habits. Most of all, though, try to have fun with your kid when developing these habits. Positive reinforcement goes a long way.