How to Get My Kids to Care About Their Dental Hygiene

father brushing his teeth with his young daughter

Kids can be stubborn, so if a kid doesn’t care about their oral health, it’s challenging to help them change. As a parent, getting your kid to care is one of the best things you can do for them, as their dental hygiene now has a big impact on their health in the future. Here are three ways to get them to care:

1. Introduce Them to Dental Hygiene Early

The earlier a kid is introduced to an oral hygiene routine, the more likely they are to maintain it as they get older. Before your baby even has teeth, you should clean their gums with a clean, damp cloth. Once a child gets their first tooth (or when they turn one), it’s time for their first dentist’s appointment!

At home, brush your child’s teeth using a rice-sized dot of toothpaste. When two teeth start touching each other, it’s time to floss. You should supervise kids younger than eight so you know they’re brushing well and not ingesting toothpaste.

2. Make Dental Hygiene Entertaining

If kids see dental hygiene as a fun part of their day, they won’t get upset when they’re told it’s time to brush and floss their teeth. How do you make it entertaining? You can find fun, kid-friendly books about the importance of good oral health, as well as videos and phone apps that use music and colorful characters to help kids brush well. Toy companies also sell dental kit playsets, which are a great way to introduce kids to dental tools.

3. Let Kids Pick Their Toothbrushes & Toothpaste

Most kids like to be independent. When you let them pick their own toothbrush and toothpaste, you’re helping them take responsibility for their dental hygiene. What if they choose a toothbrush that’s too big or a toothpaste that’s not ADA-approved? Rather than giving them free rein in a store, present them with options. They’ll still get some freedom, but you can be confident in whatever they choose.

Children’s Dentistry at Parkside Family Dental in Cary, NC

At our office, we’re proud to serve patients of all ages, including kids. We offer routine cleanings and exams, protective sealants, fluoride treatments, and more. Because the dentist can be a scary place for young people, we also have a “kid zone” stocked with games and toys. If you have questions or want to book an appointment, please contact us today!

Contact us for all of your oral health issues & questions!

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