If you are tired of nagging your kids to brush their teeth, there are lots of things you can do to help including using a tooth brushing chart. The trick to getting kids to brush their teeth on their own is to make it fun. Below I share some tips on how to do exactly that, plus a free printable brushing chart.
How to Make Dental Hygiene Fun
Since dental hygiene isn’t something you can ignore and just sit back and wait for your kids to get on board, it’s worth putting forth some effort to motivate them.
I’ll be honest, getting my kids excited about brushing their teeth has been an ongoing challenge. None of my kids became as invested in their dental hygiene as I was until after puberty kicked in and they wanted to have fresh breath for those hoped-for close conversations with the opposite sex.
Before your kids are worried about fresh breath, there are some other things you can do to inspire them to brush their teeth.
Give Them Electric Toothbrushes
Kids LOVE things that are powered. Electric toothbrushes are automatically more fun than regular toothbrushes simply because they can be turned on. Your kids don’t need to know that brushing with an electric toothbrush is more effective too!
While they do make rechargeable toothbrushes for kids, I recommend sticking with regular battery powered electric toothbrushes. They’re much less expensive so you can switch out the design or character more frequently as your kids’ interests change. Plus, kids are tough on stuff so you’ll save yourself a lot of frustration and yelling if they ruin a $5 toothbrush instead of a $20 one.
Replace Floss with Flossers
When I substituted our old dental floss with kids’ flossers, my kids made flossing part of their daily routine. They’re easier for kids to use and usually come in fun colors kids love. Some are even flavored!
Get Them Their Own Mouthwash
My youngest daughter started looking forward to brushing her teeth when I bought her bubblegum flavored mouthwash. Like electric toothbrushes, many kids mouthwashes feature different characters so you can choose one your kids love or opt for a flavor you know they’ll love (like we did).
Ironically, letting my kids choose their own toothpaste never really influenced their excitement to brush their teeth. So, though it seems like a logical suggestion, it’s not one I’ll make since it didn’t work for us.
Use a Tooth Brushing Chart
Sometimes kids just need a visual reminder. Like our Daily Routine printable, a tooth brushing chart is a great visual cue to keep kids on task (and accountable).
Here’s one I created that you can download and print for free. Just fill in the form below the image for immediate access.
Fill in the form above. After you submit the form, you’ll receive an email from “Wondermom Wannabe” with a direct link to the printable. If you do not see the email in your inbox within a few minutes, check your spam folder.
The most likely place will be in your computer’s Downloads folder. You can also select “Downloads” in your browser menu to see a list of your downloads, then simply select “Show in folder” below the file name to see where it is stored on your computer.
You’ll need a program that supports PDFS, like Adobe Acrobat (which is free). Open the program, click File > Print. Select your printer and set the number of copies you want to print. Double check your print preview, then click print.
Your kids simply mark off each box as they finish brushing their teeth each morning and evening. If your child needs extra motivation, you can use reward stickers for each box or offer a small reward for each week that all the boxes have been checked.
More Tips on Children’s Dental Hygiene
For more information about children’s dental health including resources for getting help, read this post on How You Can Help Improve Children’s Dental Health.
To learn more about how to care for children’s teeth at different ages and stages, read How to Protect Your Children’s Teeth.
Every child is going to lose teeth as they grow up, so here is A Printable Tooth Fairy Letter that will save you time and make a lost tooth special. I have free printable tooth fairy letters for boys and girls.