Getting young kids to brush their teeth can often be a battle. Not only do we want them to brush, but we want them to want to brush. So, how do we turn this twice daily necessity into a fun habit that kids will look forward to instead of dreading? How do we get them to brush without fighting us during the process? Here are some fantastic tips and tricks!
Getting Kids to Brush
with No Fuss
Tips and Tricks for Getting Kids to Brush With No Fuss:
~The Right Toothpaste- using a toothpaste that little ones like is a simple way to help them enjoy the brushing process. We use Tom's of Maine Flavored Children's Toothpaste in our home, and both girls really like the flavor. We currently have the strawberry flavor, but there are other flavors too!
There are a variety of other flavored tooth pastes for children, too! My girls also really like
~The Right Toothbrush- Having the right tooth brush is important. Ensure that the brush is the right size for little hands and that it has soft bristles so that it isn't hurting their teeth or gums. Find one in a fun character, or let them pick out their own. Make the tooth brush even more fun and get an electric one. Several readers recommended trying an electrical brush, saying their children love the vibrations and find it to tickle. We have since purchased the Spinbrush For Kids which is a battery operated electric brush. It was very inexpensive, costing just a little more then a regular brush, and Jewel & Rosie really like it a lot!
Another fun option is a tooth brush that lights up like the Flashing Timer toothbrush from Crayola. Not only does this add a fun factor to brushing, but the brush lights up for two minutes, letting children know when brushing time is up.
~Make a game out of it- create a fun and simple game out of brushing like "Germ Attack". As your child brushes peer into their mouth, telling them you see a few more germs and to catch them and brush them away. As they "catch the germs" cheer them on. Another fun game is Character Dentists where each night the parent takes on a role as brusher. One example would be the parent taking on the role of a vampire dentist coming to shine up their children's teeth (parent talks like a vampire during brushing that night)
~Brush when they brush- It's no secret that little ones want to be like mom and dad. Brush with them and show them just how fun it is. Be enthusiastic about brushing, making it look appealing to them.
~Take turns brushing- I always let Jewel and Rosie brush their own teeth for a bit before I sweep through and brush them myself. Jewel was putting up a constant fight so I started giving her my brush and letting her "brush my teeth" while I brushed hers. She doesn't really do much with the brush but it really distracts her and makes her giggle.
~The Nurdles- The Nurdles are a fun and imaginative toothpaste squirt family created by Aquafresh. They live in the magical land of Nurdle world. Nurdle World exists just behind your bathroom mirror. Visit the Nurlde site for games, activities, and to meet the Nurdle family. They also have a super fun I phone app. Rosie loves playing games in Nurdle World and she especially loves the brushing song.
~Sing a song they love while they brush- One reader said she sings a song while her children brush. If the brushing stops she stops singing. You have to keep brushing to hear the whole song. If you sing a song your children love while they brush this would surely entice them. You could even play a favorite song on your phone and pause it if they stop brushing.
~Get a toothbrush that sings- if your child is a real music lover you may want to consider a singing tooth brush. They have a wide variety from ones that sing Barney songs to ones that make animal noises. We plan to try the Veggie Tales Silly Songs Brush-a-long Musical Toothbrush in the future.
~Let them play with a cup at the sink while you brush- My girls love the water and love to play and splash around in the sink. This is such a simple and fun way to distract little ones.
~Brush while their in the bath- I try to remember this option but usually forget. Children are often distracted while in the bath, so it might be a good time to sneak in brushing.
~Make faces- Little ones love making faces. Tell them to make a shark face (teeth together) and a whale face (teeth apart) while brushing. Let them do it while looking in the mirror.
Some other fun songs to foster brushing:
Barney- Brushing my Teeth
Brush My Teeth Kids Song
Thanks so much to the readers who shared tips with me on the Growing A Jeweled Rose Facebook Page! They have been so helpful to Jewel and this will surely be a helpful resource for other parents who's children are putting up a fuss when it comes to brushing their teeth.