It may feel fruitless sometimes when your little one won’t listen to good reason. Even though you remember not liking the phrase “Because I told you so”, you’re really hoping your child will listen when you say it. But don’t fret as patience is key, no matter the task. 

Explain the Why

A lot of times, it can be difficult to persuade your child to do something simply because they don’t understand why they have to do it. They may not realize the ramifications of not brushing their teeth, so they just refuse to do it. But giving them the reasoning behind the actions can sometimes make a lasting impact. If you told them that they’d have issues with their teeth down the road if they don’t brush, do you think they’d be a little more receptive? Explaining personal hygiene and why it matters can help them understand why they need to continue doing it, even if it feels like a huge inconvenience. 

They may be a little on the young side, but that doesn’t mean you can’t explain it as well as you can, either. They may ask “Why?” a lot, or a lot of other random questions, but that means they’re trying to figure it out and decide if it’s worth continuing the battle. Stay strong! Continue to explain proper health and why they don’t want to let it fall by the wayside. 

Show, Don’t Tell

Make sure you’re showing your children how to brush their teeth, and floss if they are old enough. Simply showing them once and then asking them to do it may not be enough for them to remember the steps. Listen for a clue in the way that they may complain about doing it that may suggest it’s because they don’t know how. You can even brush your teeth together to help them establish a good routine and see firsthand twice a day how to do it. This can help make it a fun activity that they will be encouraged and empowered to do on a regular basis. Ensuring that they are brushing their teeth how they should can also help avoid any huge cavity or other dental related issues from arising. The last thing you need is for them to not be properly brushing and have a bad visit at the dentist’s office! 

Making sure you equip your child to understand the basics of everyday care will help to ensure they follow through and do it every day!  

Katie Kyzivat