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My son hates brushing his teeth

I asked this question a while back, but the problem seems to be getting worse. My son who will be one next week, has horrible tantrums when I brush his teeth. He only has four teeth, but I have to literally sit on him to get them brushed. He screams the entire time and cries out, "Mama! Maaaama!" It makes me feel so bad, but we go through this twice a day. I've tried holding his nose to get him to open his mouth, but then I have no hands left to hold his thrashing head. Any ideas on how to make this a better situation for both of us? I don't want him to associate brushing his teeth with something negative later on down the road.


Asked by FertMert at 3:46 PM on Oct. 22, 2008 in Toddlers (1-2)

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Answers (4)
  • He will grow out of it, I promise!!
    In the meantime, try letting him play with it and chew on it for a few min first. Or, try letting him "brush" your while you brush his. And, if it's a huge struggle, just get a warm washcloth and wipe down his teeth, that's all he really needs right now anyway. You just need to get all the food off, he doesn't have much plaque, and a soft washcloth would do the trick.
    I used to hand my kids a warm wet rag in thier high chair after they ate, while I was cleaning up. They would suck/chew on it and before I got back to them, they had almost cleaned themsleves up..LOL

    Answer by christyg at 3:54 PM on Oct. 22, 2008

  • I do let him play with his toothbrush, but he gets bored with it after a couple of minutes because I think he knows what's coming! LOL. Good idea about the washcloth. I will try that tonight. Thanks!

    Answer by FertMert at 3:56 PM on Oct. 22, 2008

  • make it fun! That is what I had to do. My mom use to do this song/game when I was little and I kinda took that and made into a song w/ brushing teeth. So my DD will laugh and giggle and try to get away... but I get her teeth in the process. So it is a fun thing instead of something she will dread every morning and evening. When this doesn't work, I give her the tube of toothpaste and let her hold it and play with it to keep her attention. Or give her my cell phone. Try different things or maybe a different toothpaste.


    Answer by Coastiegirl96 at 9:27 PM on Oct. 22, 2008

  • I always give my son the toothbrush to chew & play with first. After he's playing with it for awhile i'll ask him if I can brush his teeth, I take the toothbrush & brush them while i'm saying brush, brush, brush in a goofy voice. Also what helps is that my sons toothbrush lights up. It has a red light that blinks. Since he loves to chew on it so much I get to brush his teeth about 3 or 4 times a day.

    Answer by bassyentihw at 10:20 PM on Oct. 22, 2008