As a mom, there are certain phrases that you say, over and over again. Go wash your hands. Get your elbows off the table…go brush your teeth! While I never seem to worry about elbows on the table until we are out at a restaurant, brushing teeth is something that has been a concern to me since my girls seemed to have more holes than teeth – they were so cute!
I’ve developed a few tips and tricks along the way, so here’s a few on how you can get your kids into great dental habits!
1. Start early and be consistent.
It may seem nonsensical to brush a baby’s gums. No teeth, right? While I get it (I had this thought more than once with a squirming infant on my lap), in the end, it’s worth it. If you start, and don’t stop until they can independently brush, tooth brushing is just something that is done. We all know that toddlers and kids are creatures of habit, and this is one habit you want to instill early. My older daughter has braces now, so I have a lot of comfort in knowing that she knows how to take care of her teeth because we started early!
2. Set a good example.
Let kids see you brush and floss. If you aren’t brushing and flossing, and going to the dentist regularly, why would they want to? Even though my kids are older, my husband got some serious side eye when he said that he was afraid of the dentist. I went into a big speech about how great the dentist was, and how important dental health was. They kind of looked at me like I was crazy, but this type of thing can really have an affect on younger kids, so always make sure that you are making brushing teeth and going to the dentist lots of……
You have to make it fun. Sing songs, blow bubbles, buy cool toothbrushes that sing and have timers. Whatever it takes for your kids, but if you start them out having fun, it reinforces that habit and gives you a go-to story when they “don’t want to.” Reward charts work great for the reluctant brusher – just make sure that your reward isn’t sugary candy, as that sort of defeats the purpose, right???
4. Get great dental insurance
Dental insurance can help you and your family protect your overall health and the health of your family! Dental health has been linked to overall health, and without regular cleanings, decay, cavities, gum disease and tooth loss are all on the table. Even basic trips to the dentist cost, but multiply that times four, and it add up! Plus, with kids (especially if they play sports) there is always the change of more serious issues cropping up. I know that there have been a few times when I was VERY concerned about dental bills because of my daughter’s riding! She has banged up her mouth a few times and while thankfully nothing bad happened, I was happy to have her dental insurance! If you don’t have dental health insurance, you can buy it today! That’s right – you don’t have to wait for a qualifying event. Check out the Guardian Dental site to learn about dental care, tips, and finding the right dental insurance! A dental insurance plan from Guardian can help cover the basic dental care for your family as well as more expensive procedures.
Do you and your family have dental insurance? How to you get your kids to take better care of their teeth?
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.