I have a 17 month old and am finding it impossible to brush her teeth. She didn’t get her first tooth until 12 months and I struggled to clean it but still managed to do it. She has got a lot of teeth in the last couple months (she now has 12). In the last week or so it has been impossible to really clean them. I’ve tried using both a cloth and toothbrush. I’ve tried different methods of distraction. I’ve brushed my teeth at the same time in the mirror with her and none of this has worked. I’ve even tried a little bit of children’s toothpaste (I know she’s not supposed to use it until another month, but surely a month doesn’t make a difference). She just closes her mouth tight and chucks a tantrum. My husband works away during the week so he is unable to help. Does anyone have any suggestions? What has worked for you? Has anyone else had this problem?

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  • I think letting them watch it being done by a character they watch on TV and they will want to copy.
    Also let them choose their own toothbrush and Toothpaste that way they’re involved.

  • What if you wash your hands and brush your finger over her teeth to get her started then do the same thing with the toothbrush? Another idea is to try a cute toothbrushing video or song and as she warms up to it try again.

  • What I did was give her the brush. She doesn’t do much to be honest, she just plays with it but that is how she feels confident that it’s ok And doesn’t hurt. We don’t use toothpaste just yet

  • My kids didn’t untill they were ready and untill then it was kicking and screaming untill it was done. Now they only choose to do it purely only because they try to eat the toothpaste.

  • My children like Jack and Jill toothpaste. It comes in friendlier flavours like strawberry, blueberry and banana. My girls loved the black currant one.
    Another we did for a while, although they were older, was a teeth cleaning app. There may be one for toddlers :)

  • May be let her to choose her favourite brush give her reward sticker after brushing.

  • Try role playing with toys my daughter loves teaching her dolls

  • Yes my 19 month old screams so much, we ended up just giving her her brush so she can try doing it herself then we finish it off for her.

  • I have the same problem with my two year old….it is always hard work every night. Will be getting tabs on this thread.

  • Is definetely a trying time tooth brushing. I ended up downloading the tooth brushing song and playing that at each tooth brushing time. That started making it easier and now she loves brushing her teeth morning and night.

  • My youngest was a bit like this. After trying all kind of things like songs, taking turns (she brushing my teeth me brushing hers), special tooth brushes etc I then resorted to setting her in the high chair and opening her mouth by placing my left thumb behind her last molar (left side) and keeping her mouth open like this without being bitten then quickly use your other hand to brush. Not the nicest way but at least I got her teeth brushed.

  • Maybe try some songs or look for video for her. Ask her to brush your teeth and encourage her to let you do hers after. Good luck

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