5 Tips to Help Kids Get Excited About Oral Hygiene
Dental care for kids does not have to feel overwhelming. Try to involve your children as much as possible so that they feel excited and empowered about keeping their teeth and gums healthy.
Preventative dentistry is fighting against oral problems and doesn’t have to be boring; actually, it can be fun. This is an important lesson that all children should learn at an early age to help them get the most out of their oral health routine. Here’s some tips to keep oral health fun and your children excited about taking care of their teeth and gums.
Books and Videos
Check out a children’s book from the library that encourages healthy oral care habits. You can also show your child a fun video about dental hygiene for kids. Stories and videos that are designed for children are great for teaching kids how to take care of their teeth and for making oral health something that they can relate to.
Make Brushing and Flossing Fun
Think of creative ways to make brushing your teeth fun. For example, listening to fun sounds or songs while brushing can help make the entire experience a pleasant, and even fun one. Try listening to a song that is two minutes long to help keep your kids brushing for the full duration of time recommended.
You can also let your children choose different kinds of fluoride toothpaste, toothbrushes and floss to keep in the bathroom so that they can have options each time they brush. Having a cool toothbrush designed for kids that features their favorite characters helps brings out the fun in brushing and allows children to bring their favorite cartoon and television friends into the bathroom with them. Your child’s toothpaste can even be amusing. Your 5-year-old may not run to the bathroom to use your minty toothpaste, but he can look forward to a good time cleaning his teeth with a strawberry or watermelon flavored fluoride toothpaste.
Make the Bed Time Routine Family Time
At night, get together in the bathroom to brush teeth for the recommended two minutes. One way to make your child interested in oral care is to brush and floss together. Kids mimic what their parents do. After brushing, floss your child’s teeth or help them to floss if they are old enough to do it on their own. To give routine brushing an air of excitement, make up a rhyme about keeping teeth clean or sing a fun song.
To make brushing twice a day and flossing more enjoyable, create your own gold star reward system. You and your child can decorate a poster with teeth, toothbrushes, healthy snacks, and other oral health themes to represent the days of the month. Give your child a sticker to put on the poster every time they brush their teeth.
Get Kids Excited for Dentist Visits
Dentists recommend checkups every six months, which can be scary for many children. So prepare them beforehand by getting them excited about the visit. The dental office can also be a really fun place full of cool “spaceship” equipment, shiny lights and dental goodie bags. To give them an idea of what to expect; try using picture books or do some role-playing exercises to explain to kids what to expect during a dental visit and get them looking forward to the visit.
Plan a special surprise after the visit that reinforces a positive dental experience. Regular check-ups are another important part of good dental hygiene for kids. Surprise your child after the appointment with some fun family time. Head to the park or plan a picnic with a healthy treat for healthy teeth.
Why Keep Kids Excited About Oral Health?
Why is your child’s enthusiasm about maintaining a healthy mouth important? Because the added bonus of good oral health is a beautiful smile. The real benefit of good oral care is preventing cavities that can be both painful and cause early tooth loss. Proper care also prevents gum disease that can cause eventual tooth loss, bad breath, and can even be the beginning of other serious health problems.
Sources: Parent.com, Colgate.com, OralB.com