The joy of toothbrushing… Brushing the little duck’s teeth is a nightmare in our house.
First, I always forget. If I do manage to remember, it is usually late at night when he is in no mood to let me anywhere near his mouth. To combat this trouble, I keep toothbrushes everywhere. Yes, I hear you laughing at me. He is always running off with them, so I find them in the oddest places, but I always return them to the sinks, preferably by my own toothbrush, because then I remember while I’m brushing my own teeth. Another good reminding place for me is the kitchen – he eats or throws the food around, I clean up or at least throw the stuff at the sink, and see the toothbrush. Also if he takes a bath, there is always a toothbrush in there, and he will chew happily on that while he is in there turning my bathroom into a pool.
Second, getting him to put the toothbrush in his mouth. He LOVES toothpaste, I got the all-natural stuff from the health food store so that he’s not putting sugar in his mouth or ingesting flouride or anything else horrible (why you would put sugar in toothpaste is beyond me, ever read the labels on that kids toothpaste?). Of course, he sucks it right off, so I have to be ready with at least two toothbrushes, as he sucks one and opens his mouth, there is a very small window of time for me to sneak the other brush in and attack a few teeth before he bites down and sucks the toothpaste off again.
Third, getting him to let ME brush his teeth, vs. just letting him chew on it. I do think that him chewing on it is better than doing nothing at all, and some days that is just fine. Normally tho, I do attempt to brush them myself. I use the two toothbrush technique that I already talked about, plus I do it while I’m brushing my own teeth so that he wants to be like Mommy. I also try to “help” him brush, moving his hand while he has the brush in his mouth, sometimes this doesn’t go over so well, but sometimes it works.
Some days, I just have to hold him down and hold his mouth open – if he’s screaming, there is an opening….. ugh. Please tell me they don’t need to brush too badly before they are two, or this child is headed for the dentist very soon.