Toddlers are known for making the biggest fuss over the simplest tasks. Take brushing their teeth for example! They can cry and scream and purse their lips and clench their teeth and spit out toothpaste if they’re really not feeling it. By the time their fit is over they could have brushed their teeth twenty times. But alas, that’s real logic, not toddler logic. So here are some tips to help get the toddler toothbrushing job done!
Make brushing their teeth a part of their daily routine. Routine is so helpful for kids because they know what is coming next and expected activities are less likely to create a fuss.
Get a fun toothbrush that is the right size. My kids love character toothbrushes. Even better if it’s an electric toothbrush. The best is an electric toothbrush with flashing lights that times 3 minutes!
Make sure to get age appropriate toothpaste. Kids toothpaste has less fluoride in it than adults because kids tend to swallow it rather than spit it out. Also make sure to get a good tasting toothpaste that your child likes!
4. Let them try to do it themselves
We always let our kids try brushing their teeth on their own. Independence in this area is a good thing! Just make sure you have a turn as well to make sure their teeth are actually clean.
5. Have a teeth brushing song
Sing a song while your kids brushes their teeth and have them hum along! This is a fun way to make sure that they are brushing for the requisite time and also distracts them so they don’t get too bored before they’re done.
6. Make it fun
Get excited and be silly! Make it fun in whatever way your child will appreciate.
7. Pretend play with stuffed animals and dolls
Give your kids a toothbrush to play with. Let them pretend to brush the teeth of their stuffed animals, dolls, and toys. You can even let them try to brush your teeth if you’re feeling brave!
8. Brush together
Brush your teeth while they brush theirs. Kids love nothing more to be just like mom or dad!
These tips make toothbrushing go much more smoothly around our house! It’s not a perfect system because #toddlers…but it works most of the time, so I’ll take it!
Natasha is a work-at-home lawyer and mama to 4 kids acquired through adoption and IVF – Laurel (7), Bennett (6), Christopher (3), and Everly (9 months). She blogs at Let’s Be Brave.