According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease.
While many parents are aware that proper and frequent brushing is one of the most important steps in protecting their tot’s pearly whites, getting kids into the bathroom to brush – without kicking and screaming – can sometimes be a challenge.
The makers of Coral Kids Toothpaste, a fluoride-free formula made with EcoSafe™ ionic calcium from above-sea coral, knows that yummy toothpaste may not be the only trick parents need up their sleeves to sustain little ones’ interest in clean teeth. The makers share some of its favorite tips for getting kids keen on the teeth brushing routine:
1. Pick the perfect toothbrush. Take your little one shopping to select a special toothbrush. Favorite animated characters, spinning heads and flashing lights are just some of the enticing possibilities that may pique their interest. Letting them choose will boost their “big kid” confidence and make them more vested in brushing.
2. Offer toothpaste that tastes like a treat. Appeal to small senses with a healthy toothpaste that tastes extra special, like Coral Kids’ in Xylitol-sweetened, safe-to-swallow berry bubblegum. But beware bells and whistles created with harmful chemicals, such as artificial colors and sweeteners, which may entice but can also lead to serious health concerns.
3. Bring fun into the bathroom. Brushing should be taken seriously, but it doesn’t have to be serious. Encourage kids to make big, circular brush strokes like train wheels; create as many “mouth bubbles” as they can; or pretend they need to clean their “big dinosaur teeth.” When brushing is playful, there’s less pressure.
4. Find a kid-friendly dentist. Make first trips to the dentist fun by choosing a provider who caters to children with music, puppets, toys and more. If the experience is positive, they’ll be more prone to want to impress the dentist (and possibly get a special treat) with their good at-home brushing habits.
5. Set a good example. Show your kids that brushing is an easy, everyday routine by modeling frequent and scheduled brushings, such as right after breakfast, before bed or following a sweet treat. It can even be a family affair! When little ones see brushing as a simple daily habit instead of a chore, there will be less protest.