If you find that your children resist brushing their teeth every morning and night, don’t worry. You’re not alone. Many parents find that at some point, their young children become defiant about brushing their teeth. The first step in solving this problem is to look at it from your child’s point of view. Perhaps there’s a logical reason behind their resistance.
One reason why some children dislike brushing their teeth is that they have a new tooth coming in, which makes their gums sensitive. Take a look inside your child’s mouth to see if you can spot any new teeth erupting from the surface of the gums. You can purchase a numbing agent at the grocery or drug store to combat this common problem. Depending on the age of your child, you might want to consult your dentist or a pharmacist about which numbing gel is safest for your child. A product that contains benzocaine as the active ingredient, like Orajel, will usually do the trick.
If your child resists the numbing cream, you could try wrapping a soft cloth around your finger and applying toothpaste gently. This method can also work for children who are hypersensitive to stimulation.
Another way to encourage your child to brush is by making a game out of it or rewarding them with something afterward, like reading a book before bed. American Dental Association dentist Dr. Kim Harms has found that even her own children and grandchildren disliked brushing their teeth at some point. Dr. Harms discovered that turning toothbrushing into a fun family activity was one of the most effective ways to encourage her children to brush.
Parents should also remember that sometimes when children resist an enforced activity, it could be an expression of their desire for independence. Explaining that toothbrushing is a mark of independence and self-care could be another way to encourage rebellious children to maintain their oral health.
Schedule Your Next Appointment
A regular oral hygiene routine is necessary for a child’s healthy development. If your child struggles to maintain their brushing routines, come talk to the dentists at Babylon Dental Care. Our team of compassionate professionals can help get your family get back on track. Our offices have reopened, and we are now offering all of our regular services again. Schedule your next cleaning with us at (631) 983-6665 or reach out online.