Oral hygiene is one of the most effective ways to prevent dental issues. The earlier a person starts taking proper care of their teeth, the less likely they are to deal with dental issues like gum disease. That is one of the reasons why it is essential to teach children about the importance of dental hygiene early on. That way, it becomes a habit that they take with them into adulthood.
If you are looking for new ways to make oral hygiene a fun activity for the kids, this article is for you. Let us take a look at some great ways to spice up brushing and flossing sessions.
Oral hygiene tips for parents
1. Do it together
Children have a tendency to mimic the things they see grownups doing, and that can be used to instill good oral habits. Turn brushing and flossing into a family activity that everyone enjoys. Watching parents brushing and flossing teaches them good dental hygiene habits since they only have to mimic it. If they watch their parents brushing gently and brushing their tongues, the kids are more likely to follow suit. Parents can also spice things up by singing a song or nursery rhyme.
2. Get an interesting toothbrush
The kid’s toothbrush section is filled with all sorts of cool brushes. Many have images of popular cartoons that children watch. That way, the child connects oral hygiene to other things they enjoy.
3. Use a timer
Brushing sessions should be two minutes long according to the American Dental Association. Parents should use a timer to ensure each child is brushing for two minutes. There are actually two-minute sand timers that are designed for brushing. The child simply needs to flip it over and begin brushing.
4. Use kid-friendly toothpaste
The reality is that many adults do not like the taste of minty toothpaste, and children like it even less. If the child dislikes the minty taste, that can lead to them associating brushing with negative emotions. Instead, use a toothpaste that is made for kids. These come in fun flavors like banana and strawberry so the child can actually look forward to brushing.
5. Use educational tools
There are many books and videos that can be used to encourage good oral hygiene. These stories are made for children specifically and teach them important things they need to know about keeping their teeth healthy. It is done in a light, fun manner so the children are more likely to pay attention.
6. Give rewards
Positive reinforcement also helps when it comes to teaching children good dental hygiene habits. For example, you can give the child a sticker after each brushing session, which they can use to decorate their room, or they can earn points to purchase the toys they like.
By instilling good oral cleaning habits early on, parents can ensure their children will have healthy teeth for the rest of their lives. Contact one of our dentists to learn more about how to teach children the importance of oral hygiene.
Call our Leawood, KS, dental office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.