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Help with brushing teeth on a wriggly screaming 15 mo!

(22 Posts)
Amberc Mon 12-Oct-09 14:24:52

Does anyone have and ideas or suggestions on what I can do to make teeth brushing time less hideous. My 15 mo is teething constantly but I don't think it's pain which is causing him to hate teeth brushing so much as I try to be very gentle and he loves the taste of the toothpaste and will munch away on a loaded brush very happily. Unfortunately I don't think this is thorough enough otherwise I'd leave him to it! He has three molars and six front teeth.

peachsmuggler Mon 12-Oct-09 14:36:31

Hi Amberc

My 19 month old is similar. A lot of the time it can be about catching her in the right mood, i.e. in the evening doing it before bath rather than after. I sometimes sing a song really loudly to her while doing it, or give her some sort of "contraband" that she is not usuallly allowed, e.g. the nail clippers blush to play with while I do them.

At the moment that thing thatis working is to let her sit in the airing cupboard and switch the buttons on the heating control off and on while we do it. Not ideal, but much easier that wriggling and screaming.

Good luck!

Amberc Mon 12-Oct-09 14:43:35

Love it! Just need to think of contraband that we don't already give him to --shut him up-- focus his attention on other things!

Amberc Mon 12-Oct-09 14:44:20

Ah - I see my strike out didn't work sad but you get the gist!

facebookaddict Mon 12-Oct-09 15:20:07

Peppa Pig 'Dentist' episode with Peppa saying 'AAAAAAHHHHH' when back ones being cleaned did it for us. Has worked for over a year! Now we are referring to the 'sugar bugs' that come to take your teeth away, but that wouldn't work on a 15mth old!

kidcreoleandthecoconuts Mon 12-Oct-09 15:24:45

We had this problem with my DS when he was this age. We tried distraction etc but it didn't work. In the end we just had to grit our teeth and basically pin him down to do it- teeth are just too precious imo. He did grow out of it and now age 4 happily brushes his own teeth and puts up with me giving them a good going over when he's finished blush

jasper Mon 12-Oct-09 15:28:41

or do it when he is aseep

jasper Mon 12-Oct-09 15:28:55


Amberc Mon 12-Oct-09 15:35:55

Asleep - that's genius! That's when I do nasal drops and nail ctting so why not teeth. I will give it a go tonight.

IwishIwasmoreorganised Mon 12-Oct-09 15:43:11

We give ds2 his toothbrush while he's in the bath - he happy chews away on it for a while then we have a quick go and hope that we've got them all clean!

Teeth are important, but the fact that the brush loaded with toothpaste has made it in the mouth offers some protection so try not to stress too much - 'tis just a phase smile

jasper Mon 12-Oct-09 15:50:11

let us know how you get on.
It worked for 2 of my 3 screaming wrigglers.
The third would always wake up

robino Mon 12-Oct-09 15:51:48

We hunt for animals grin. Can take no credit - it was an idea I came across on here. Originally used it with DD1 when she was about 2 and very reluctant. In the end she got bored of us looking for giraffes, lions and monkeys so now we look for antelopes hmmwith appropriate sound effects hmm hmm.

It seems to work with 15 mo DD2 too but that could be because she sees big sis having fun rather than understanding the "animal hunting" concept. Maybe one to bear in mind if you're still having struggles in a while?

BrightonMama Mon 12-Oct-09 21:09:46

Have exactly the same problem with my 17 mo. He's always hated having his teeth brush and at first was trying to distract, making it into a game, but found it was just taking ages and not working anyway and hated the thought of him getting decay. So now I just pin him down and go for it - he does scream but luckily that makes things a lot easier!

I've found the best way to do it is to sit on the floor with him facing away from me. Then I lie him down on his back with his head between my thighs, so I can grip his head and stop it moving from side to side (probably good for inner thigh muscles too!)With one hand I hold his hands down away from his face and with the other I brush as though my life depended on it.

Let's hope i'm not still doing that when he's 15.

TheRedQueen Mon 12-Oct-09 21:29:16

We used to (pretend to) look for food that DD had eaten during the day. "Oooh! There's some Weetabix! And some egg! Did you have sausage and mash for lunch at nursery? I'm sure I can see some." etc. etc. etc. Drove me mad, but served its purpose.

ByThePowerOfGreyskull Mon 12-Oct-09 21:33:57

I would go with the allow him to play with the toothbrush in the bath letting him brush his own teeth with you just finishing off at the end.

Brewster Tue 13-Oct-09 13:57:22

we give our 14 month old a toothbrush in each hand and 3rd for us to clean his teeth with. he is happy to have something to hold and play with and chew on while we quickly get a clean in....been working for afew weeks now

mumtoem Tue 13-Oct-09 15:40:37

We use a brush baby toothbrush also available from Jojomamanbebe. 17 mo DD happily chews on this and it cleans half her mouth in one go. I also have a normal brush to finish off with. I get her to sing and make silly faces at her. I also took her to the dentist when I had a check up, so she could see that I opened my mouth for the dentist.

HolidaysQueen Tue 13-Oct-09 15:52:27

DH has had great success with getting 18mo DS to say "aaaah" very loudly, and also with doing it while DS is playing in the bath. I tend to be the one doing it in the mornings and DS pretty much refuses with me then. At the moment I let him have the toothbrush with toothpaste loaded, and he usually chomps on it for about 10 mins! I just rely on one good teeth clean plus a reasonable chomp on toothpaste being more or less enough for now as he has relatively little sugary stuff - a lot less than me!

mathanxiety Tue 13-Oct-09 16:56:09

With DS, I took a turn and then he took a turn, so teeth were actually brushed, more or less, twice. A turn lasted until the end of Happy Birthday, sung by me. I love the brilliant hunting for animals idea smile

Amberc Tue 13-Oct-09 21:25:39

Right then. I tried extreme contraband - mummy's earrings. Did not work I'm afraid. I tried asleep - nightmare as his mouth was closed and I couldn't get it open. He also kept turning over every time I touched his mouth. Unfortunately then woke up and got upset. I think I will stick with the pinning down method. He hates it and so do I but at least I can give 'em a good going over. It's when he's older and he realises he should just mash his lips together that we have a problem!

I already have a brush baby toothbrush. He is just not interested in it I'm afraid and it has been cast aside! Thanks for all the advice folks. And good luck to all with the same problem!

toomuchmonthatendofthemoney Wed 14-Oct-09 00:35:05

hi Amberc,

i used to give ds my toothbrush and get him to "brush" mummy's teeth, he got so involved with this, he hardly noticed that i was doing his at the same time. I think he also liked the feeling of having some control in the situation, doing as well as being done to, if you see what i mean.
And yes sometimes night time is a quickie with a much longer brush after breakfast next day when his tolerance is better!

Tambajam Wed 14-Oct-09 06:37:17

I usually pinned but then tried a toothbrush that plays a song. It plays 'bare necessities' and uses their skull as the speaker. DD was transfixed. Completely transformed the experience.

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