For every parent and guardian out there, we know the struggle. Convincing your child to brush and floss can be challenging at times. It’s not the best experience for them either, so occasional reluctance isn’t surprising. However, brushing and flossing with children is a highly crucial part of their oral health routine and can help prevent urgent trips to your pediatric dentist in Lowell.
Creating a set of dental health habits during their childhood helps you avoid teeth and gum issues like cavities and periodontitis now and in the future. It allows kids to take care of their dental health until their adulthood, which could reduce the risk of more difficult problems to deal with later on.
The Challenges of Brushing and Flossing with Children
While every child and family is unique, there are several common challenges that parents encounter when brushing and flossing with children. Acknowledging these can help you take the right step toward overcoming them.
In today’s busy world, parents tend to juggle multiple jobs and responsibilities at a time. Amidst this hustle, it can be challenging for many to find a regular time to create an oral health routine with kids, let alone both brushing and flossing.
Reluctance and Resistance
Whether it’s how the toothbrush feels in their mouth, the taste of toothpaste, or just finding the idea of brushing and flossing a little boring, kids may be reluctant to do this activity. They may find reasons to avoid it and turn your hygiene sessions into a small battleground.
Short Attention Span
Children, especially younger ones, have shorter attention spans than adults. It can be hard for them to stay focused long enough to brush their teeth for two minutes and then floss.
Lack of Skill
To brush and floss well, you need a certain amount of agility that younger kids may not have yet. Bad technique can make cleaning less effective, defeating the activity’s whole point.
Some children are more sensitive to how things taste, feel, or look in their mouths. This might make brushing or flossing their teeth uncomfortable and even upsetting for them, which makes them less likely to do it.
Misinformation or Lack of It
Kids still have a lot to learn about the world around them. Myths, like the idea that sugar is the only thing that causes cavities, can make them even more confused. People can have the wrong ideas about how important dental hygiene is if they don’t have enough information.
Why Make Dental Hygiene Fun?
Given the difficulties we talked about, you might be wondering why it would be worthwhile to make dental hygiene enjoyable. Why don’t we just get it over with as soon as possible? Although it is tempting to think that way, the advantages of making brushing and flossing enjoyable activities far outweigh the time and costs.
Children are far more likely to participate willingly when they find an activity enjoyable. Making the experience enjoyable in the context of dental hygiene can result in better cooperation from your child. You won’t have to engage in daily bargaining to get them to pick up their toothbrush. When it’s enjoyable, they might even start reminding you to brush and floss.
Making dental hygiene a fun and enjoyable experience helps children form positive memories and associations. These positive impressions can overcome any reluctance or resistance they may have previously felt. In other words, they will be less likely to regard brushing and flossing with children as boring chores and more likely to regard them as enjoyable.
It is critical to remember that habits formed in childhood frequently persist into adulthood. Making dental hygiene enjoyable now will lay the groundwork for a lifetime of good oral health. Children who brush and floss their teeth on a regular and effective basis are more likely to maintain these good habits as they grow older. This not only helps to keep healthy teeth and gums, but it may also lower the risk of more serious dental problems in the future.
Making Brushing and Flossing More Fun for Kids: Tools and Tips
Getting kids to brush and floss can be tough. But the right tools and some smart ideas can make it much easier. Here are some simple ways to make brushing and flossing fun for your kids.
Electric Toothbrushes for Kids
Think about getting an electric toothbrush made for kids. Many of these toothbrushes have lights or play songs. These fun features can make your child more interested in brushing their teeth.
Some kids don’t like the taste of regular toothpaste. The good news is there are different flavors like strawberry or bubblegum that they might like more.
Simple Timers for Brushing
Kids often think two minutes is a long time for brushing. You can use a simple timer or a phone app that helps them know when it’s time to stop. Many of these timers play fun music or show pictures to make the time pass quickly.
Books and Videos About Teeth
You can find children’s books or videos that talk about why it’s important to take care of your teeth. These can make your child more interested in brushing and flossing.
Colorful Floss Picks
Regular floss can be hard for kids to use. But floss picks come in different colors and are easier for them to hold. The colors make flossing more fun.
Apps for Flossing
There are phone apps that make flossing into a fun game. These apps have timers and rewards that can make your child want to floss more often.
Make Up Stories
Stories can make brushing and flossing with children more fun. You can tell your child they are getting rid of “tooth bugs” or “saving the day” for their teeth. This can make them feel excited about taking care of their teeth.
Make Dental Health Fun for Your Kids and Choose Kangaroo Smiles!
Do you find it hard to get your child to brush and floss? You’re not alone. But don’t worry, taking care of your child’s teeth can be fun when you come to Kangaroo Smiles.
We are a unique kind of pediatric dental practice. When you’re here, we want you and your children to feel at ease. The relaxing colors and amusing images on the walls make our office a pleasant place to be. Additionally, there are play areas for children and a coffee area for parents.
Our staff knows how to help kids take care of their teeth. We’re here to help your kids keep their teeth healthy as they grow, from regular cleanings to mouthguards for sports.