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Hi I was hoping you could ask a question for me please to see what other mums advice. My 16 month old refuses to either let me brush his teeth or to have a go himself. On a good day he’ll suck the toothpaste off the brush but that’s as much as we can manage. He didn’t used to mind it and he still likes wandering about holding his toothbrush but he just won’t put it in his mouth. He doesn’t seem to be teething which I first thought might have put him off a bit. I’ve tried cleaning his teeth with a wash cloth in the bath, cleaning mine at the same time, singing songs about brushing teeth and I’m getting nowhere. Any suggestions would be great. At the moment it’s like pulling teeth! Ha ha ha! How can I get my 16 month old to clean his teeth?

Emailed by anon 19/06/2013

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  • Well, you’re probably going to have to do it yourself. To get him to let you, maybe find some youtube videos featuring characters (Maybe the Wiggles?) doing it.


  • I’m having the exact same mproblem with my 23month old!


  • try the toothpaste for milk teeth that mccleans makes, they kids love the taste and will do it just for this


  • Motherhood is all about persistence! these little people are here to test us but if you keep persisting they will eventually get it!


  • the dentist told me to say that I needed to scrub their fairies or pirates that are inside there teeth and make them all clean and sparkle


  • Hope things have improved for you since you asked this. Both my kids went through it but they were stages that soon passed


  • Our son has only just let us brush his with no fuss, unfortunately that took over a year of brushing twice a day no matter how much he fought or cried. You just have to keep going with it and not take no for an answer. Tears and fights at night are better than having his teeth pulled out.


  • No solutions but the other mum’s tips are very useful


  • Give him a present if he brushes properly!


  • Good luck ;-)


  • At 16 months old you should be cleaning his teeth till he is old enough to, my son used to love it when mummy brushed his teeth at that age you need to remember at that age they not gonna do much his still trying to get a hold of things and he will do it himself with a bit of encouragement.


  • We made it a game, put an in-ce-wee-nie bit of toothpaste on the toothbrush and cleaned as fast as I could and praise her as much as I could and she laughed and giggled


  • i know he is only young, but if you have an iphone, download the nurdle time app. he might like to watch it and listen to the song while he does it. make it fun


  • My 2nd son didn’t like brushing his teeth, he just chewed on the brush and used water for two years. I think he didn’t like the toothpaste feel. We went through a lot of toothbrushes!! His teeth are fine, he’s six now and he brushes properly, it may just be a phase, hopefully your son will grow out of it like mine did.


  • There are teeth brushing apps you can download…?


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