It’s 9 PM, its past bedtime and the kiddos are still not in their jammies… do you take the time to have them brush their teeth or just throw them in bed?
Look we get it, as parents, it is not easy. With everything you have to juggle every day sometimes the little stuff gets passed up. You know that oral health is important, but when you are already beat from another long day of parenting its hard to survive, let alone remember to brush your kids’ teeth.
Here is a simple tip to help: The Healthy Twoth plan, 2-2-2. There are only three “twos” you need to remember as a parent to set your kids up for better oral health:
1. Children Should Brush and Floss Their Teeth for 2 Minutes
We know this is not easy. When you step back 4 minutes a day doesn’t seem like much, but when your wrestling a toddler into her jammies and trying to brush your 4 year old’s teeth 2 minutes is an eternity. The trick is to get your kids to brush their teeth themselves and be excited about it.
Yes, it is possible to get your kids to like to brush their teeth, for 2 minutes. Some hints?
- First, make it a routine. If you can some way help your kids tie tooth brushing into the routine of demanding bedtime stories, or their obligatory drink of water, then they’ll demand it instead of you.
- Second, talk to your kids about brushing their teeth in a way they understand (This “Why do We Brush Our Teeth” video may help).
- Third, timers are a helpful tool. There are elaborate timers like the R2-D2 Timer or just using fun online timers. You can also sing a song that helps them know how long to brush.
2. Children Should Brush Their Teeth 2 Times a Day
It is important to get in brushing 2 times a day. You might find that for your family that the morning or evening brushing is easier. And if you get one in a day as a busy family we applaud you. For best tooth health it is important to brush 2 times a day. Try finding ways to get both in, making it a priority now will help your kids as they grow into teens/adults have good habits that will last a lifetime.
A question we get often is “when is the right time to start brushing?” As soon as your child gets their first tooth. Once that tooth comes out it is important to protect it.
3. Visit a Dentist 2 Times a Year
Regular appointments are the key to good family dentistry. Make sure you always have an appointment on the calendar for your kid’s next check-up. If you don’t right now have one on the calendar, set an appointment.
When looking for a dentist for your kids be sure to look for one that relates well to them. Our Meridian office will offer rewards for kids, TVs in the ceiling and other kid-friendly features, but the most important thing to look for is making sure the dentist and staff are friendly and attentive to your child. Finding the right dentist will help ease your child’s concerns.
Healthy Kids, Healthy Teeth
As a busy parent, it’s not easy fitting in one more thing (trust us we know). Healthy oral habits are important to start early, even when it might not be easy.
Our hope is that every Treasure Valley mouth is a happy, healthy one. That’s why if you ever find that your kid’s toothbrush is getting worn, or they threw it in the toilet (again), we welcome you to stop by our office and we’ll give you a replacement, free.
Here’s to Health Twoth Habits!
Brought to you by Treasure Valley Family Dentistry