DD is 14 months with five teeth. At the moment when I try and clean her teeth she lets me try and brush them for about a second, but puts her tongue in the way and then clamps down on the tooth brush. It ends up with me just let her chew on the tooth brush for a bit.
I was just wondering if anyone had any tips for doing better and whether or not it is really important to clean teeth after bedtime milk before bed at this stage. At the moment we just manage them once a day in the morning when I do mine .
I haven't got around to moving evening teeth brushing to after milk yet as dd has her milk in bed and goes to sleep with it, which although isn't ideal, I'm hoping it isn't the end of the world.
My current trick to keep her mouth open for a while is to open my mouth wide and 'hum' her favourite songs (to the sound of ah) and get her to copy. It's working at the moment. DH gets her to hold something in each hand (toy/book/toothpaste) so that she doesn't grab the brush off him.
She does like to hold my toothbrush and 'do' my teeth while I do hers but she's not quite dextrous enough and ends up shoving it in my throat or at my lips, which hurts, so I wouldn't recommend that trick!
I think just getting used to the routine of it and gettting the toothbrush in her mouth is important to be getting on with - don't make it too much of a battle!
Do it with an electric toothbrush. You just hold it there and it does the back-and-forth brushing for you, so you get more brushing done in 0.05 seconds than you do with an ordinary toothbrush. The vibrations are good for easing teething pain, too.
I sing "this is the way we clean our teeth clean our teeth....on a cold and frosty morning" - it seems to pacify ds (16 months) long enough for me to have a quick whizz round, I then give him the toothbrush to chew on.
Same song, different words for washing face, cutting nails etc etc. He seems to understand that if we are singing the song its a game.
Electric toothbrushes are not suitable for 14 month olds (heads are far to big). No magic tricks I'm afraid. Try as others have said - in the bath, various games (roar like a lion) etc. The things you can control at this stage are diet, so limit amount and frequency of sugar (check labels on food - the higher "sugar" is mentioned in ingredients the more there is).
You can buy flashing toothbrushes, which flash for 60seconds, apparently as long as they need to brush their teeth, so we say they have to let us brush their teeth while it flashes. Keeping the mouth open is definitley a struggle, we get ours to roar like lions, as this involves the mouth being open. I also sing a song that I make up, usually slightly different each time. Usually to the tune of Clap your hands and wiggle your fingers, or whatever they have been singing in the day. Mu son loves Something Special so we include in the song the idea that he is brushing his teeth like Mr Tumble. Hope that helps!