As anyone with children knows, teaching kids to adopt good dental hygiene habits is a pain. Children rarely like to do anything that is not fun or interesting; unfortunately, they frequently view dental hygiene as anything but. Getting a child to brush his or her teeth – and understand the reasons behind doing so – is difficult, but is not impossible. Rather, it is a challenge that is worth adopting, since dental hygiene is incredibly important for children and adults alike. This article will serve as a guide to help you with teaching your children valuable lessons about dental hygiene.
The most important lesson your child can learn about dental hygiene is the importance of taking care of their teeth. They may be too young to understand bacteria and how it can hurt them, but that is okay. One of the best ways to introduce small children to the importance of taking care of their teeth is to let them play games involving hygiene that presents the material in a fun way. There are plenty of websites out there that have great activities you can use to teach your children valuable lessons about hygiene (without requiring them to understand bacteria and other complicated topics).
Once they get why it is important, you should teach them lessons about brushing their teeth. Take the time to buy them their very own toothbrush by giving them a few choices and letting them pick their own. Then, explain what it does and how to use it. Show them how to hold the brush and how to brush in small circles all around their mouth. Then teach them how to rinse the brush and store it so they do not contaminate it with bacteria. Also, make sure they know to brush their teeth three times a day while they are children for strong and healthy teeth.
The next lesson should be on what they should or should not eat. They need to learn lessons about proper dental nutrition so their teeth do not decay. Explain to them that candy is bad for the teeth, but do not ban it from them. A child who is not allowed to have candy will usually get it anyway, and will not understand the importance of controlling it. Instead, tell them that candy is good, but too much of it is bad – and if you want “pretty teeth”, do not eat as much candy. Put it in a positive way, though, by making it into a game or story that they will enjoy.
If your children learn lessons about why hygiene is important, how to brush their teeth, and what to eat, they will develop strong and healthy habits for their teeth that will stay with them well into the future.