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Any good tips to aviod the daily showdown of refusing to brush teeth?

(5 Posts)
JuliaGulia Wed 10-Aug-11 14:11:16


I have 18mo b/g twins and since their first teeth came through we've been brushing their teeth morning and night. I figured an early start to the process would mean that they would be more willing as they got older but oh no.

Now - DS likes to hold his brush and suck off the toothpaste. The brush barely goes in his mouth. Left to his own useless efforts and he's happy but any intervention and he goes into meltdown and we're forced to pin him down to get any teeth brushed at all. He's screaming, we're annoyed - it doesn't sound like the nice winding down time that we all strive for. I'm worried that this approach will deter him in future but we just don't feel that we can leave the teeth unbrushed.

My DD is a little more co-operative opening her mouth and saying 'aaahhh' which is a relief but we're pretty worried about our son.

They're 18mo - is this too young for an electric toothbrush?
Shall I get him to the dentist? They can't sit still for a minute so I'm doubtful that a trip to the dentist will be successful.

Any tips, hints or suggestions all welcome. It's turning into a nightly battle...

LordOfTheFlies Wed 10-Aug-11 15:33:12

Trust me it doesn't get easier!

I did buy those battery op toothbrushes for my DCs but they are heavy.
Alot of DCs don't like very minty toothpaste ( my DS uses Sensodyne Pronamel or Retardex if he's dehydrated and whiffy but he's 11 so they wouldn't suit your DCs)

An egg-timer is a great aid to help them time their brushing and watch the sand go through.

Let them choose their own brush and buy them a special beaker to rinse with.
Mine refuse to share a tube of toothpaste or a bottle of mouthwash, so it has to be one eachconfused

I have to arm wrestle him into using the plaque disclosing tablets when he's been lazy (they do taste vile though)

Dentists- take them with you to watch.Then they can go in the 'big chair' to get used to it.

Or another idea, though I haven't tried it, is to get him to brush your teeth while you brush his.

tootiredtomakeupagoodname Wed 10-Aug-11 17:08:55

My DS is almost four and we have just managed to get him to open his mouth for the dentist and his teeth are perfect, I have worried myself sick for nothing. Your DS is probably a bit young to understand or get treats but I used to tell DS no chocs/cakes/sweet things in general unless he let me brush his teeth, I stuck by it and he soon opened his mouth willingly. I also used to brush his teeth while he was in the bath as part of his getting washed routine and he would be distracted by bath toys etc, I also sing 'scrub a dub dub dub dub dub dub, etc' - the things you have to do as a mum!

crispface Wed 10-Aug-11 22:01:54

<terrible mother emoticon> I used to give dd the options "nice way" or "nasty way". The nasty way involved lying her down to clean them, she would cry, her teeth were cleaned, quickly and briskly.

Teeth and teeth cleaning are such important issues that it HAD to be done. One time of being laid down, with me over her teeth brushing, soon made her choose "nice way" if ever she thought about refusing.

JuliaGulia Fri 12-Aug-11 11:15:15

It was awful last night.
DS barely brushed his teeth so we tried to 'help' and then there was blood on his toothbrush - I felt terrible! Perhaps he's teething a bit...

I hate to make him brush his teeth but his breath was certainly not minting fresh so I know it must be done.

Not sure how long I want to continue this struggle but things can't continue...

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