Pop quiz—how long should you brush your teeth? If you guessed two minutes, you’re correct! It may be easy for you, as an adult, to stick with brushing your teeth for the recommended duration. But if your child isn’t reaching that goal, don’t panic! This post will teach you three fun and easy ways to get your kids to brush their teeth for a full two minutes.
How Should a Child Brush Their Teeth?
First, let’s start with a few basics. Follow these quick tips to help your child understand good oral hygiene habits and learn how to brush teeth properly.
- Always use a soft-bristled toothbrush. Younger children, in particular, have sensitive gums and mouths.
- Don’t overdo the toothpaste! A pea-sized amount is enough. If your child is over the age of three, it’s good to use toothpaste that includes fluoride.
- Brush twice per day. And make sure your child brushes for the full two minutes both times.
- Easy does it! Teach your child gentle up and down or circular motions.
If your child has started to brush their teeth, it’s time to schedule their first dental appointment!
3 Fun Ways to Get Kids to Brush Their Teeth for 2 Minutes
It’s not always easy getting your kids to brush their teeth for two minutes, but it’s important to stick with it. If you’re struggling, there are some easy ways to improve your child’s brushing habits and help them reap all the benefits of preventative dental care.
Tip #1: Time Their Brushing
There are lots of ways to make brushing fun! First, turn the chore into a game with one of these time-keeping methods:
- Use an hourglass timer. Raid your board games! Kids love to watch the sand disappear.
- Reach for the egg-timer. Bring this kitchen staple to your bathroom for brushing.
- Open the stopwatch app on your phone. Don’t have an egg-timer or hourglass? No problem! Use the free stopwatch app on your phone.
- Buy an electric toothbrush with a built-in timer. Here’s an easy way to take the brushing game to a whole new level! When two minutes are up, the brush will turn off.
Next up, let’s talk music! Yes, music and brushing can go hand in hand.
Tip #2: Add Music to the Mix
Kids love music, and it’s a great way to get them excited about brushing their teeth. Let them help build a playlist of songs that are about two minutes long, then throw a mini party. Add glow sticks or a disco ball if you’d like, and have a quick family dance session once brushing is complete. If you prefer to skip the fanfare and keep things simple, sing one of their favorite songs to pass the time while they brush.
Tip #3: Reward Them for Their Time
Your child might not want to brush their teeth when they’re just starting, but getting rewards after every session can motivate them to continue brushing correctly. For example, you can try using stickers or small treats as a reward system for certain milestones. You could even treat them to a new toothbrush or a tube of toothpaste with their favorite character!
Do You Have Other Questions About Helping Your Kids Brush Their Teeth Properly?
Whether you have questions about how many minutes to brush teeth or when to schedule your child’s first dental appointment, Peace Haven Family Dentistry is always here to help! You can trust your family’s smile to our team, from the very first cleaning for your toddler to the teenage years and beyond.