With the school year just about to begin, many parents find themselves rushing to get everything organized and get back into the school year routine. One routine that is often overlooked is the dental care routine. On average, creating a new routine or forming a new habit takes 21 days and although this may seem daunting, your children will thank you as they get older for the good dental care values you instilled in them at such a young age. Read on to find out how you can create a kid-friendly dental care routine:
Timing is everything when it comes to caring for children. As they get older they quickly become aware of the morning and bedtime schedule. Therefore, it is important that you time the routine accordingly. Make sure that you set aside roughly ten minutes in the morning and at night. Ten minutes may seem like an excessive amount of time, but this is allowing extra time for lollygaggers that may try and put off brushing their teeth for as long as possible. Many dentists and hygienists agree that a thorough brushing should be at least two minutes long.
After a good brushing with a fluoride toothpaste, it is recommended that you floss at least once daily. If your children don’t feel comfortable using string floss perhaps opt for the very kid friendly floss picks. This makes flossing easier for tiny hands. Of course, if you’re comfortable with your children using mouthwash opt for a kid friendly version and make sure to monitor how they use it. Available in many different flavours, kid friendly mouthwash is usually a hit.
Creativity & Rewards
Children will often put off brushing their teeth, but this becomes less of a problem and common occurrence if you make the routine fun and creative! There are many simple ways you can make oral care fun such as purchasing specially designed toothbrushes with their favourite characters, ones that have a singing timer and opting for a good tasting toothpaste. Of course, if all else fails, create a strong reward program. Instead of rewarding your children with sugary treats that may harm their teeth, create a sticker chart reward system that ends with a large prize. For example, if they follow the routine carefully for seven days straight then they can select a new colouring book or pick a day to go to the park for a fun picnic.
By starting to follow a kid-friendly dental care routine at such a young age your children will grow to adapt the routine as their own and adjust it accordingly as they get older and their teeth change.