Do you have a fight most nights with your children about completing daily hygiene activities — like brushing their teeth? Is it a struggle with tears and complaints? Do you want to find a way to make brushing teeth fun for them so that they see its value and maybe even enjoy it?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then read on to get our five crazy-fun tips for teaching your children that brushing your teeth can be an enjoyable experience. Here’s how to get started:
1- Hold a Tasting Party
Today, there are all kinds of healthy, crazy-delicious flavors for children’s toothpaste, and this can really make brushing teeth a more pleasurable experience. By a few different flavors and have a “tasting party.”
Explain that adults go to “wine tasting parties,” and that this is a kid’s special version — complete with an array of cool and interesting flavors. Have everyone brush their teeth with a little of each toothpaste and rank the flavors. But make sure everyone spits! You don’t want anyone to consume too much toothpaste and get sick.
2- Make Up a Song — and Sing it Together
Making up a crazy-silly song is a sure-fire way to make brushing teeth fun. Set your lyrics to a favorite song. The success of talking toys like “Talking Elmo,” are because they are equipped with dance-along songs that are upbeat and make toothbrushing an event. Replicate that with your song. An example might be to copt the lyrics to the chorus of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” with these lyrics:
“Don’t stop, brushing!
Hold onto that toooooth bru-ush!
Kid stars, people
Don’t stop, brushing!
Hold onto that toooooth bru-ush!
Kid stars, people”
Be creative and make it fun and silly.
3- Incentivize Brushing Teeth Each Night
Every kid loves a good prize — and this is where you can reward tooth brushing. Make it a competition among your kids and reveal the top prizes ahead of time — such as a trip to mini golf, a funny wig, a soccer ball or a sweet they love. Each kid who brushes teeth each night gets to put a star on the board, and by the end of the week — the kid with the most stars wins a prize.
4- Hold a “Glow-in-the-Dark” Party
Go wild and crazy with a glow-in-the-dark party for brushing teeth. Buy glow-in-the-dark toothbrushes, necklaces and pajamas. Get decked out in your glow gear, fuel up your toothbrushes with paste, turn on the dance music and shut down the lights. Have fun watching the glowing rainbow of movement among your children. They’ll remember how fun it was to have a party and want to do it every single night.
5- Invite Neighborhood Kids Over to Brush Teeth
Sometimes toothbrushing is a team effort — and what better what to enforce how fun it is than with an army of friends. You can get the neighborhood kids on a schedule, where they brush their teeth at different neighbors’ homes each day of the week. It will be a novelty for the kids — who will think it is fun to see their friends just to brush teeth — and it will be something that motivates them throughout the week. Imagine it now: A gaggle of little ones brushing teeth for fun! It can work with the right coordination among neighborhood parents.
Never Negotiate Toothbrushing with Your Kids Again
Remember that for children who are not accustomed to brushing their teeth — or who have a sensory issue with brushing their teeth — it can take some time for these tips to work. But with patience and diligence, you can get there. Try these tips for about six weeks, incorporating one or two at a time until you get to the point when you can let them loose into the bathroom to brush their teeth by themselves. At that point, brushing teeth should be a party!