A trick to brushing your toddler’s teeth!
February 25, 2016
Every night it is the same ole, same ole. We have him “brush” his teeth first, then we beg and plead with a moving toddler to open his mouth, say Ah, let us get the top ones, let us get the bottom ones, add more toothpaste, pretend add some more toothpaste, add only water, repeat, repeat, repeat, until NOW. Luckily we are still using training toothpaste and we barely put enough on the toothbrush because we know he will want more and more and more and more.
For the past few days, I have noticed that it is super easy to brush his teeth if I just sit him on my lap and lean his head back.
Ding, ding, ding!
Toddlers love to be upside down. Why have I never thought about this before?
Not only does he patiently let you scrub all of those precious little teeth, but you can actually see those molars and the progress that they are making with entering this world. His dentist (which I absolutely love) has us do the same thing except he puts his head in her lap while I hold him. It is easy and fast.
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends that a child go to the dentist by age 1 or within six months after the first tooth erupts. At this age, the dentist is super fun with the kids (if you have a good one). Ours sat down with him and opened a picture book that she had made of other babies getting their teeth looked at. She explained each page and made him comfortable. Then, I sat him on my lap and leaned him back. She looked at his teeth, brushed them, and I sat him back up. He wasn’t too happy but it was fast. Next, we repeated and she polished them. After that, she added some fluoride and we were done. He got a balloon and we left.
We are also at the stage where when we talk to his teddy bears, he listens. (I picked up that helpful tip from the book, The Happiest Toddler on the Block). One night Donovan was fighting us to go brush his teeth. In front of him, I told his daddy that teddy needed to have his teeth brushed and handed him off. Without saying a word to Donovan or even looking his way, daddy left with teddy. Immediately Donovan ran down the hallway, eager to help and have his teeth brushed like teddy.
Never missing an opportunity to teach (where we can), story time has became learning time. One of his absolute favorite books to read at bedtime right now is The Tooth Book by Dr. Seuss. I actually have it memorized.