How to Get My Toddler to Brush Teeth

How to Get My Toddler to Brush Teeth

It has been said that getting a willful toddler excited about brushing their teeth is like teaching a cat to surf. While we don’t know how to get cats to surf, we do know a thing or two about toddlers and promoting positive dental health.

At our Surfside Kids Dental Pleasant Hill office, we are spilling our top tips on how to get your toddler to brush their teeth and be excited about it!

First, Include Brushing In Your Child’s Daily Routine

One way to get your toddler to brush their teeth is by making this habit part of the daily nighttime and morning routine. For example, make them brush their teeth before you read them their favorite bedtime story. This structured approach to the timing of teeth brushing will make your child more open to brushing their teeth. It takes 20 days to create a habit, so be patient, consistent, and, most importantly, don’t stress. this takes time.

Redirect Defiance with Choice

Your child may start acting up when it’s time to brush their teeth because they want to show independence. You can use this desire to display their independence by giving your child an opportunity to pick the toothbrush and toothpaste flavor when you go shopping.

Pleasant Hill pediatric dentists ​say that by allowing the toddler to choose their own dental care products, they will be more eager to use those products, and you will have less of a fight when it is time to brush teeth.

Avoid Demanding Too Much

As an adult, you fully understand the importance of brushing and flossing your teeth. However, your toddler may not fully comprehend why brushing is necessary. For this reason, our amazing Pleasant Hill Pediatric Dentists recommend that you adjust your expectations to simply seeing that your toddler is trying to brush. Giving them exaggerated praise will encourage them to cooperate more.
Conversely, expressing frustration with your toddler for not brushing perfectly can bring out their rebellious side of them, and it will become a battle to get them to brush again. So, Mom and Dad, we’re sending all of the positive Surfside vibes your way! You can do this, it won’t be easy, but before you know it, your little surfers will be brushing pro’s!

Go Electronic

Toddlers and kids, in general, are fascinated by gadgets. Let’s face it, not many changes into adulthood. Invest in kid-friendly electric toothbrushes to make brushing more fun! Simply buy them an age-appropriate battery-powered toothbrush and let the fun begin. You can find them at Target, Costco, or even online.

Get Support

As mentioned earlier, your toddler may not cooperate when it is time to brush their teeth, simply because they are trying to assert their independence. However, this doesn’t mean that they will act the same for all adults. When visiting Surfside Kids’ Dental, let one of our ​pediatric dentists or gentle team members know that your child struggles with brushing their teeth. We will work our magic to reinforce all of the awesome ways you are promoting dental health at home. Go, team!

Get Musical

Who can say that their toddler doesn’t like singing along to their favorite kids’ songs? Now is the time to harness this love for music in your quest to get your toddler to brush.
For example, you can come up with your version of the popular kids’ songs and insert lyrics that encourage the toddler to brush. An example is the song that goes, “Row, row, row your boat…” Change those lyrics to, “Brush, brush, brush your teeth, twice every single day…” the singing that accompanies the brushing activity will make it more fun. So, put your funny hat on and sing your toddler to great dental hygiene!

Incentivize Brushing Your Teeth

As you probably know, at Surfside, we are a judgment-free zone. That includes bribery as a last resort. So, if you have to switch it up and offer them incentives here and there, we are here for it. You’ve seen our prize bins, right? But seriously, a reward chart wouldn’t require much from you if you want to see your toddler develop good oral hygiene habits.

Another great way to incentivize brushing teeth is with stocking stuffers! This holiday season, make sure to gravitate towards stocking stuffers that encourage kids to take care of their oral hygiene. Some great ideas are electric toothbrushes that play music, mini toothpaste or even charcoal toothpaste, floss, and mouthwash.

If you’ve tried the suggestions above and still encounter difficulties in getting your toddler to brush his or her teeth, contact ​Surfside Kids Dental​ , and our experienced pediatric dentists will help you find a solution to the challenge.

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