Regular flossing, as well as tooth brushing, is essential for maintaining healthy teeth and gums – and, the best way to ensure your child maintains good oral health through life is to establish good oral hygiene routines early.
While you should speak to your pediatric dentist in Stuart, Florida to get suggestions about when to begin, most feel teaching your child to floss when they’re between two and three years old is a good idea. They’ll require supervision and assistance until they’re about the age of eight, but establishing regular flossing habits now, puts them ahead of the dental health game as they get older.
Your kids may have already become proficient at brushing their own teeth, but getting them to floss generally tends to be more difficult. Following these tips and tricks can help.
Most kids love stickers. You can have yours use their favorite stickers to count how many days in a row they floss on a flossing chart. Leaving it up in the bathroom provides a great reminder. You can also use incentives like getting an extra story at bedtime or staying up a little later on the weekend if they’ve managed to floss daily during the week. There are printable charts available online, or you can ask your pediatric dentist in Stuart, Florida if premade charts are available in the office.
Make up stories
Making up an adventure story involving flossing can make it fun too. Children love battles between good and evil, you could make up a tale involving dreadfully evil bacteria and the mighty powers of floss. As they get to control the hero by flossing, everyone wins – except the bacteria, that is.
Floss picks can make flossing easier for a child and many floss picks come in cool shapes such as zoo animals or sea creatures. These floss picks turn the ‘chore’ of flossing into a fun activity with special toys.
Lots of positive reinforcement
As a good habit usually takes some time to develop, it’s important to offer positive reinforcement along the way. A combination of gentle reminders to floss daily along with plenty of praise when they do it, is a good way to keep them excited about taking care of their teeth – and making those visits to your pediatric dentist in Stuart, Florida, a whole lot easier.