In the day and age of “everyone gets a trophy, and nobody loses”, you may be asking yourself, “Why in the world should I give my kids incentives for brushing their teeth?” Truth is good oral health and a strong, confident smile is probably one of the most important things you can give your child, so why not make brushing fun and interesting. Finding a dental practice that offers children’s dental care is a step in the right direction, but implementing positive steps in your home is most important.
Let’s face it; most kids don’t like to brush their teeth. Not only do kids not like it, they really aren’t very good at it either. Many times parents get tired of fighting with their children over brushing and flossing. Without constant monitoring and assistance, it’s hard for any young child to have great oral healthcare habits. If you can help create and teach good oral hygiene habits from a young age, chances are you kids will grow up with stronger, healthier teeth and smiles. If the chore of getting your kids to brush their teeth seems like a losing battle, here’s a popular tip / incentive to help make this daily grind a bit more tolerable (for both parties).
Kids love charts. Create a brushing chart that hangs in the bathroom, easily accessible by your child. Each time your child brushes their teeth without being asked they get to mark the chart with a sticker or star. By letting kids take ownership of their brushing and charting, you are showing them that consistent work produces positive benefits and results.
Only you know what motivates your child, so make the reward for (x) number of stickers something they will love, perhaps a special activity or a small healthy treat. Predetermine what the “reward” will be and discuss the goal with your child. The key is to be consistent with charting and with delivering the reward on a timely manner to keep your child excited and interested. Make brushing fun, your smile will thank you and so will your kids.