Tooth decay and periodontal disease are two of the most common chronic conditions. A majority of adults admit they were never given the proper instruction and motivation to take great care of their teeth when they were children. The lack of healthy habits can lead to a lifetime of expensive and aggravating dental problems. Here’s how to help the next generation grow up with a better outlook on dental care.
Make it Colorful
Take a stroll down any toothpaste aisle and you will come across dozens of beautiful and eye-catching products that make tooth time lots of fun. Brushes come in all shapes and sizes and can often be found with cartoon characters and designs that children immediately get excited about. Since a toothbrush should be replaced every three months, you can really get creative. Flossing doesn’t have to involve a boring white piece of string either. Floss holders of various colors and designs help make this daunting task much easier to get a grip on.
Make it Rewarding
Remember we are dealing with little minds that love to get praise for a job well done. Setting short-term goals can keep them excited. There are lots of ways to reward children for staying on task. High fives, sticker charts, point systems for their favorite activity, and end of the week activities can keep everyone motivated. Remind them from time to time about why we need to take great care of our teeth.
Make it Entertaining
Who wants to stand in front of a bathroom mirror for three minutes straight in total silence? Adults have a hard time with this so you can imagine how difficult it is for a tiny one to stay focused! Bring in some music, download a brushing app or have a dance party. That’s right, the key is being involved! Show and tell is the absolute best way to prove that good dental habits are important. Trust us, as much as they might roll their eyes, they will remember how much you care.
Although this post was geared toward building children’s dental habits and making brushing fun for them, these strategies work just as well for adults. Switch up your toothbrush, listen to your favorite song and reward yourself for a job well done! Need a little cheerleading session? Call today to make an appointment with one of our motivating hygienists!