How do I convince my child to brush their teeth?

May 18, 2021

Family brushing their teeth

Many parents ask: “How do I convince my child to brush their teeth?”

It’s a question parents have been struggling with since the toothbrush itself was invented.

Over the years, parents have resorted to creative inducements, gentle coercion, and outright pressure to encourage their children to embrace brushing their teeth... many times to no avail.

At Brushalot, we think it’s time for a simpler and more effective approach.

Our Simpler Approach

So... “How do I convince my child to brush their teeth?”

Our answer? Surrender!

OK, we know surrender may sound counterintuitive as a strategy, but trust us – it’s one of the best ways to make brushing and flossing fun for your child.

How can this be so? Allow us to explain…

Every parent knows children love to be in charge.

Making decisions, understanding consequences, undertaking choices are all a part of their development as individuals – and, in most cases, it makes things more fun.

Simply put, kids want to be the boss.

Kids In Charge

So, when it comes to brushing and flossing, let your little one take charge.

In other words, "surrender" by allowing your child to take charge in the battle against Prince Plaque and the Tartar Troopers, just as Sir Brushalot and General Floss do in the storybook!

For instance, consider purchasing multiple toothbrushes featuring different designs or cartoon characters for brushing. When it comes time to brush, let your child select the brush they want to use. You can do the same for dental floss.

To kick things up a notch, brush alongside your child and give them the added power of choosing your tooth brush and floss, too.

Play Music!

Another idea is to play a song when it’s time to brush. Not only does playing a song make brushing more fun, but it helps your child learn timing.

But, most of all, a brushing song presents you with another chance to empower your child to make choices by letting them choose the song they want to brush and floss to.

The Feedback Loop

Always remember to commend your child and congratulate them when they make decisions that encourage good oral health habits.

Children look up to Mom and Dad more than anyone else.

A few words of praise and encouragement in response to your child’s smart choices will go a long way in making healthy habits permanent – and will be a big boost in their self esteem!

So if brushing and flossing are a problem for your child, try something different – surrender!

We bet you’ll be glad you did!  Your child will be, too.


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