Mornings can be hectic for parents who have to get themselves ready, get their children ready, cook breakfast, pack lunches, and get everyone to their destinations on time. Parents will often wake their children up and tell them to get ready for school, assuming they’ll effectively take care of their oral hygiene on their own. Keeping a child’s teeth and gums healthy is an essential preventative care method to help them avoid oral complications in the long run. However, parents should develop a fun routine for children to stick to so that they look forward to taking care of their teeth on their own.
A fun way to ensure children look forward to brushing their teeth in the morning and evening is to play their favorite song and have a dance party while they brush and floss. There are also fun videos and brushing apps available to help the two minutes fly by. Parents can also try reading a short story to distract their child until the task is completed. Getting creative will help children equate oral hygiene with having fun and they will eventually look forward to taking care of themselves.
It’s important for parents to stick to this routine even if their child has had a long day or if they’re on vacation. Sticking to a fun routine will help brushing and flossing become second nature for children.
Rewarding children for brushing and flossing every day will motivate children to continue to keep up the good behavior. Parents can create a reward chart and let their child add a fun sticker every time they complete their oral care routine. Rewards can be as simple as a positive verbal statement, a high five, or a fun activity at the end of the week.
The most important thing a parent can do aside from making oral hygiene fun and rewarding their child is to lead by example. Children watch and learn from everything their parents do. If their parents are attempting to make their child practice good oral health habits but they don’t practice good habits themselves, it’s likely the child will eventually discontinue as they get older. Parents must also brush and floss twice daily for two minutes so that their child understands that practicing good oral hygiene is a lifelong task. Making brushing and flossing a family affair is an excellent way to instill good oral hygiene habits into a child’s mind.
At McBride Dental, we offer numerous services to help our patients maintain healthy teeth and gums for a lifetime. We have preventative care services that help our patients avoid oral issues, such as cavities, gum disease, and tooth loss. Our preventative care services include X-rays, thorough examinations, deep cleanings, and more. For those experiencing oral issues, we offer treatment options, such as gum disease treatment, cavity fillings, dental implants, and much more. If you are in the San Diego area and would like to schedule an appointment with us, contact our office today at (760) 471-1003.