This post on caring for kids teeth with braces is sponsored by Arm and Hammer Tooth Tunes but all opinions express are my own.
When my children were younger we worked hard to get them to do a good job brushing their teeth. We would buy fruity tasting toothpaste and sing songs to remind them how long they should be brushing for. Once they got the hang of things, I pretty much began ignoring tooth brushing time for about 10 years. I figured they were old enough to do it by themselves and it was one less thing for me to worry about, right? As long as the dentist said their teeth looked okay I wasn’t going to worry about it any more. Well, then came the teen years and with it we began our journey into thousands of dollars worth of orthodontics work. Spacers, jaw widening devices, braces and soon elastic bands. Oh, the joys of having teenagers, right? Well, now I find myself worrying all over again about how good a job they are doing when they brush their teeth. Caring for kids teeth with braces requires a lot more work than it did before they had all that metal in their mouths. Now that they have all those cracks and crevices for food particles to hide in, I find myself nagging at them again…Did you do a good job? Did you floss? Did you use the special mouthwash I bought you? Are you REALLY done brushing that quickly? Teeth brushing time has begun to be a game of Twenty Questions in my house. I have been struggling to get them to understand the importance of slowing down and caring for their teeth properly. I thought I would share some of these tips on caring for kids teeth with braces. I hope you find them helpful in keeping your own kid’s teeth clean and healthy!
Tips for Caring for Kids Teeth with Braces
1. Watch what they eat: You will get a whole list of foods from your orthodontist on things they should avoid eating while they have braces. Everything from gum and taffy to ice cubes and popcorn are on the ‘do not eat’ list. Even healthy foods like apples and carrot sticks are a big no no. I find that slicing apples nice and thin and steaming the carrot sticks for a few minutes to soften them up makes them much easier to eat.
2. Protect those teeth during sports. If your child is active in sports, make sure you get an orthodontist approved mouth guard for them to wear while they play. They can do serious damage to their mouth and set you back a lot of money if they get hit in the mouth with a cleat or fast moving ball.
3. Stock up on wax and Anbesol: All that wire can be harsh on the lining inside the mouth. Make sure your orthodontist gives you wax to cover the wire with and invest in a numbing gel to help sooth tender gums and cheeks.
4. Find the right toothpaste: My daughter has never liked most mint flavored toothpastes and when she was younger we always got the bubblegum or strawberry versions. Since no one else in the house likes that sort of toothpaste we always have multiple flavors floating around. I recently found a ‘mild mint’ toothpaste from Toms of Maine that she really enjoys so I only need to buy one toothpaste for the kids bathroom.
5. Don’t forget to floss: Just because they have all that metal in their mouths doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be flossing. They make little tiny floss threaders that help your child weave the dental floss between their teeth for easy flossing. Flossing is one of the most important parts of caring for kids teeth with braces. So much food gets stuck in there that you really need to make sure they are getting it all out!
6. Make things easy to find: We keep a basket on the counter in easy reach of the kids to encourage them to use all the products we blow our money on. Honestly, my teens are so lazy some days that just opening the medicine cabinet is too much work for them. Mouthwash, floss, toothpaste, etc all get put in the basket as a visual reminder to take care of their teeth.
7. Make sure they are brushing long enough. Just like when my kids were younger, I needed to find a way to keep them at the link longer. Teenagers have OH so many more important things to do in life than to brush their teeth. Like eat me out of house and home and socialize with their friends. Caring for kids teeth with braces means keeping them clean and in order to do THAT they need to actually be in the bathroom brushing. I tried a timer but that was rather boring and required one extra step that they are just too lazy to take. I was recently sent the Arm and Hammer Tooth Tunes 1 Direction Toothbrush for my daughter to try out and she was so excited! Like most teenage girls, she is a huge 1 Direction fan!
Caring for Kids Teeth with Braces
The ARM & HAMMER™ Tooth Tunes™ One Direction toothbrush is the only brush that plays One Direction here in the US. There are two options to choose from: one brush plays “What Makes You Beautiful” performed by One Direction and the other one plays “One Thing” performed by One Direction. Each toothbrush plays two minutes of music to encourage longer brushing. ARM & HAMMER™ Tooth Tunes™ uses a special, one of a kind Music in Your Mouth™ technology. It actually streams sound vibrations from the bristles of the toothbrush through the teeth, allowing kids to hear the music while they brush. The brushes have a suggested retail price of $9.99 and are available at mass, drug, and food retailers nationwide.
My daughter really loved the new ARM & HAMMER™ Tooth Tunes™ One Direction toothbrush and hounded me constantly once it arrived to get started testing it out! The head on the toothbrush is a nice size and the handle isn’t so big that she can’t hold onto it easily. She thought the music could be a bit louder but then again she listens to her music at ear splitting decibels. I thought the volume sounded just fine to me! The base of the handle is flat, making it easy to set upright on the bathroom counter to dry. The music is turned on with a quick press of the thumb and the handle is comfortable to hold. All in all, a great way to make caring for kids teeth with braces easy and enjoyable.
Brush with Tooth Tunes™, Rock with One Direction Sweepstakes
Check out the Brush with Tooth Tunes™, Rock with One Direction Sweepstakes and enter for a chance to win the Grand Prize, four tickets to a One Direction concert in August 2013! 100 First Prize Winners will receive One Direction prize packs, with One Direction merchandise! This would certainly WOW most teenagers! To enter, follow the below steps:
- Create an optional video of yourself or your kids brushing with Direction ARM & HAMMER™ Tooth Tunes™ for your chance to be featured on ToothTunes.com! (A video is not required for entry.)
- Visit ToothTunes.com, complete the registration form and click submit to be entered for your chance to win.
- Enter up to once per week now through 6/30/13
- Winners will be chosen July 2013
Disclaimer: I am part of the Mom It Forward blogger network. Mom It Forward and ARM & HAMMER™ Tooth Tunes™ partnered in support of this campaign. ARM & HAMMER™ Tooth Tunes™ compensated me for participation in this campaign. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own.