Guide your kids to brush their teeth independently

(NC) -- Parenting challenges include patience as our children learn to care properly for themselves. There is a significant gap, for example, between kids who would really like to do various tasks independently, and the number of parents willing to let them do so, according to the newest research by Philips Sonicare.

Their company research shows that 49 per cent of children (aged three to 12) are adamant about brushing their own teeth without adult supervision. However, almost one-third of parents say they are not satisfied that their children are brushing properly when unsupervised. Furthermore, did you know that dental decay is the most common infectious disease of childhood, causing pain, absence from school, and social stigma?

Jo-Anne Jones, a dental professional in Canada, addresses the concerns parents have with their kids. “Teaching children to take care of themselves can be a challenge, especially for parents who are hesitant to give up some control to their youngster,” she points out. “The proper tools and strategies ensure that the whole family is making the most of their oral care routine.”

Jones recommends three tips to help parents feel more comfortable about giving their kids more control when brushing their teeth:

1. Start with the proper tools, especially those that attract a child's attention. The new Sonicare for Kids, for example, is a rechargeable power toothbrush for little ones over four. Philips tells us that it maximizes the oral care routine and is designed to encourage healthy brushing habits, even when kids are brushing on their own. And, a new free app called Brush Busters does the same by giving them fun storylines, characters and rewards for the full two-minutes of recommended brushing time.

2. Lead by example. Your kids will have a better idea of brushing expectations if you are following them as well. That means ideally brushing for two minutes at least twice a day, cleaning in between the teeth daily and making regular visits to your dental professional.

3. Reinforce good behaviour. After a positive trip to the dental office, reward your child with praise for their ability to take care of themselves properly.

Parents will always worry about their kids, but with the right approach and strategy, brushing teeth becomes one less thing to worry about.


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