Flossing is an integral part of keeping gums and teeth healthy, and without it, you're susceptible to developing gum disease. If you've been trying to get your child in the habit of flossing and haven't had much luck, then you're not the only one. Getting kids to floss reliably can be hard, but with some alternatives available to you, you might be able to get the same effects in a reliable manner. Here's what you should consider trying if your child won't floss.
Try Handled Flossers
Handled flossers are something you've probably seen at a drug store at some point. They look a little like a disposable razor; they have a handle, and then at the top, two pegs hold a piece of floss taut between them. You glide this floss between your teeth to remove food debris and to encourage circulation of the gums.
Some kids like these tools better because they're easier for little hands to handle. They also tend to be significantly quicker to use, so if your child is fed up with flossing because it takes too long, they may warm up to a handled flosser.
Try Water Flossing
Water flossing is another great alternative that your child might enjoy. Water flossers come in all varieties, including those intended for children. The child water flossers are made with smaller handles to be comfortable to use in small hands, as well as smaller mouthpieces for the same reason.
Water flossing can be fun for kids. They get to "play" with water and can shoot it at their teeth and gums to stimulate circulation and blast away plaque and debris. Many water flossers are also designed to be decorated by children, which creates a sense of ownership that may make your child more willing to use the product.
See the Dentist More
Finally, if your child just won't floss even with these replacements, then it's time to start heading to the dentist's office more.
Not flossing allows plaque and tartar to develop between the teeth that can trigger gum disease. Once it becomes tartar, nobody can remove it but a dentist. So, in short, if your child won't floss, they need to go to the dentist's office more often so a professional can do the job for them.
If your kiddo won't floss, it's not the end of the world. These methods may appeal to them and get them the cleaning that they need. If not, plan on seeing your dentist a little more often every year. Contact a pediatric dentist to learn more.