I'm shocked that people wouldn't make their children brush their teeth. Seriously. If you as an adult know the ramifications of your child not brushing their teeth and you still don't require it? I find that shocking. I find it shocking that you would allow your child to engage in a behavior that could have long term health ramifications - poor dental hygeine is linked to a whole host of health issues - inflammatory diseases, heart disease etc... I think it's hugely irresponsible to not require your child to learn proper dental hygeine.
I don't *make* my children brush their teeth, they do so of their own free will. It's been taught to them since birth. I started "brushing" their gums as newborns with a soft cloth and as they got teeth, I introduced the toothbrush. Now at ages nearly 2, 3, and 4 they have each been seen by the dentist, each sat for an exam and cleaning with no crying, no screaming. Just as happy as could be. The trio will also sit still and allow dh and I to floss their teeth. The dentist complemented me on their excellent oral hygiene and told us to keep up the good work. Us because the children and I are a team.
Just because *I* don't *make* them do something, doesn't mean I don't require it.....