By The Brush: Keeping Children Honest About Hygiene

Many parents fear the nightly battle they face with their children when they ask them to brush their teeth. Though there are some children that enjoy their nightly routines, many couldn’t be any less interested. Which makes the troubles of parents that much tougher to handle. This leads to the question, what is the most effective way for parents to instill healthy brushing habits in their children without the extra trouble? In the hopes of helping parents keep their children away from the pains of tooth decay, this post will detail the brushing strategies parents can use to instill the best habits into their children.

The most important thing for parents to remember is that no two children are the same. What works for one, might not work for another. Unfortunately, there is no ‘one right way’ to instill these habits into any child. Parents will have to tap in to many different offerings to find what’s most suitable for their child. Of the most popular strategies, one that any parent can try is incorporating some form of entertainment into their brushing time. This can be as simple as a toothbrush that’s customized with a child’s most adorned stickers, or a brush that includes their favorite cartoon characters to keep them entertained. Alternatively, through the use of mobile apps, children can participate in different brushing games that include videos or music to maintain interaction throughout the two minutes.

For some kids, this sort of interaction can be great. Others, however, may want something more simple; such as companionship. Sometimes a child just doesn’t want to have to brush alone, which can mean that simplifying the process can be as easy as making brushing a collective routine rather than an individual one. Make it a ritual to bring the family together and brush as a unit. This same principle can apply to children who love to mock or mimic those around them, too. For example, if your child struggles to brush, but loves to mimic your every move, attempt to entice them that way instead! Entertain their mocking attempts and get right to brushing and see how they react.

Above all else, what parents must understand is that a habit is much easier to maintain if it’s picked up at young ages. Any budding child that begins formulating this habit early can ensure that their oral hygiene can remain as healthy as possible throughout their life. Understanding this, it’s important for parents to begin early. The moment they feel comfortable with their child physically holding a brush, they should have one ready to place in their hand with instructions and encouragement on how to properly use it.

Identifying the strategies that will work for your family will certainly take time. It’s also worth noting that being able to adjust on a whim will be necessary when embarking on this oral health journey with your children. For that reason, it’s important that the habits and information they’re being shared is up to standard. Parents will struggle with their children for a bit nonetheless, but in hopes to avoid the extra trouble that can come from the nightmare brushing years, be sure to read on to the infographic coupled alongside this post. Courtesy of Sycamore Hills Dentistry.

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