This post is sponsored by Phillips
It’s a battle that plays out in homes across Australia every morning and every night – getting kids to brush their teeth.
In my house each child is a different type of brusher. We have the speedy gonzales, the bunny brusher (front teeth only) and the light-handed brusher, who is to be commended for being thorough but unfortunately is not overly effective.
Most parents would agree that trying to supervise multiple kids to ensure they are all brushing properly for the recommended two minutes can be challenging. Anything that can make the operation run more smoothly is a huge bonus.
Over the years, I’ve tried a number of tricks and here are three great (and easy) ways I’ve found make brushing teeth fun for kids:
- Make It A Game
Depending on the age of your children, there are a number of ways you can turn brushing into a game. Here are just a few suggestions:
- If you have littlies, let them brush a doll or teddy’s teeth while you brush theirs.
- Make up a story where the plaque on teeth are the bad guys and brushing is your child’s superpower.
- Brush as a family – not only will your child love that you are brushing too, but you are also being a great role model.
- Brushing dance party – put on some music and dance while you brush! One full song is the perfect length of brushing.
- For older kids encourage a little healthy competition amongst siblings. Set a two-minute timer and whoever can brush non-stop (properly) for the full time is the winner. Perhaps you could keep a winner’s tally and have a prize at the end of the week for the champion.
- An Electric Toothbrush
Kids love gadgets and electric toothbrushes for kids are the ultimate tool that’s fun to use and good for them! You can get lots of different types of electric toothbrushes these days. Ones designed specifically for kids often boast extra features, including fun designs and timers to ensure they are brushing for the recommended time. They also have changeable brush heads which allows you to use the same handset for multiple brushers.
- There’s an App for that!
As with everything these days, there are apps specifically designed to help make brushing more fun. Just go to your app store and search “toothbrushing” to find the wide range of paid and free apps available. Some of our favourites include Brush DJ and Brush Teeth with The Wiggles. There are even ones that are interactive. For example, the Sonicare toothbrushes from Philips have their own coaching app and use Bluetooth technology to help improve your child’s technique, as well timing. This not only makes brushing fun, it also helps set up great lifelong dental habits for your child.
Obviously, establishing routine is one of the key factors in making sure children understand the importance of brushing twice a day. Regular dental check-ups will also help reinforce the message. Another handy trick is to get disclosing tablets from the pharmacy which, when chewed, stain plaque on teeth. As well as revealing how effective your child’s brushing technique is, this visual prompt can help motivate your child to brush more thoroughly.
Making brushing fun will help reinforce good dental hygiene habits for you child. This will not only help their long term dental health but will also have a positive impact on other areas of their health and wellbeing throughout their lifetime.