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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i suppose i could have posted this in life with a babe... but it feels like a discipline issue to me and something i want to start setting the right tone on...<br><br>
my DS is 10.5 mo. and he likes to brush his teeth - and i want to keep it that way <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> problem is he doesn't like to stop brushing his teeth once we get started. i brush his teeth first to make sure they're done, and then i hand control over to him and he brushes and brushes and brushes....<br><br>
then there comes a point when i'm done with being in the bathroom brushing teeth and want to move on... i don't want to yank the brush away from him, so i give him a warning about 30 seconds before i start encouraging him to stop brushing. then when i'm ready i say it's time to be done and i give him a toy to focus on instead and i try to take the toothbrush when he directs his attention to the toy... but usually this doesn't work... so i've also tried making a regular habit of saying the same things "it's time to be done brushing teeth" "let's wash the toothbrush out and put it away" and i hold him over the sink to help rinse out the toothbrush and we say goodbye to the toothbrush, but he still wants to hold on to it afterwards.<br><br>
i'm a little wary of letting him keep the toothbrush to play with afterwards #1- because i feel like i need to keep a close eye on him to make sure he doesn't hurt himself with it, and #2 because i am not sure i want to send the message that the toothbrush is a toy. but most of all i don't want this to be a power struggle! i'm sure the same sort of thing is going to come up over and over again... so i'd be happy for any thoughts from experienced parents!!<br><br>
i know the toothbrush issue is particular is worse because it's something that happens at bedtime when he's tired... perhaps we just need to make teethbrushing something that happens at least an hour before bedtime rather than as part of the bedtime routine. he doesn't eat solids regularly, so i never know when his last solids intake of the day is going to be, or i would do toothbrushing immediately after that.
 

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I think eventually the toothbrush will become old and not so much fun, so this problem will probably go away on its own.<br><br>
What is the next part of your routine after toothbrushing? Is there something he particularly really likes that you could put after it? Like, if you read books next, maybe you could bring a few books in and when its time to stop brushing teeth, show him the books and ask him to choose the one he wants. Maybe he would then turn his attention to the books and forget about the toothbrush. Or put on music and say its time to "dance" (my DD likes a good rocking/walking/dancing session to settle down - but I think for some babes it could be stimulating).<br><br>
Or maybe a different kind of toothbrush wouldn't be as interesting.
 

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My 15 month old loves to brush her teeth too. She walks around the house chewing her toothbrush after we're done.<br><br>
But then, everything is a toy to her...
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>chfriend</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">My 15 month old loves to brush her teeth too. She walks around the house chewing her toothbrush after we're done.<br><br>
But then, everything is a toy to her...</div>
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Oh please don't let her do this. I do know a child who severed their artery doing this! It really is dangerous, unless its one of those round baby tooth brushes that looks like a horse shoe.
 

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maya...I knew somebody would post that. Thanks for your advice, but I'm comfortable with our choice.<br><br>
OP: perhaps that will be helpful for you. Apparently there is a horseshoe shaped toothbrush you could do this with. Or not if you're concerned.
 

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When my son was that age, I used to sing a song while I brushed his teeth. Then I would sing it while he "brushed his teeth." Then I would say, "All done!" and we would put away the toothbrush. It worked well for us and stopped the screaming fights over ending our toothbrushing session.
 

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That was my ds to a "T" lol He went through that phase where he'd sit and brush his teeth for as long as I'd let him, and then cry up a storm when I decided to leave the bathroom. He was probably about your ds's age. At first I thought I'd just let him cry, but it didn't seem to die down any. And I thought about letting him run around with it, but that didn't seem safe to me. And one time when I had decided to let him run around with it, he fell, and that scared me, so...we stopped doing that.<br>
What I did was, for a couple of times, I just sat and let him brush his teeth as long as he wanted. I'd brush my teeth, floss, do my makeup, whatever, while he sat and "brushed". After that, he'd still want to keep brushing a long time, but he'd be ok with stopping if I asked him to put his brush back in the cup, and told him he could turn the lights out (light switches were really fun for him too lol). So maybe have something that's extra fun to direct his attention to after he's gotten to brush for a while.<br>
Sometimes it still takes a few minutes, and I have to ask a few times if he's ready, but he's pretty good about it. And one good thing is that he still loves having his teeth brushed <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> lol<br>
I guess my point is that it's just a phase. And probably a short one- you know that theory that if you let them do something, it becomes less important to them? I think that fits here.<br><br>
Good luck <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
thanks <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> of course everything is a phase in the long term - i just figure this same sort of pattern is going to repeat in other scenarios...<br><br>
i had thought of the song singing idea but hadn't tried it yet. i love the idea of bringing in his bedtime books next to get him interested in the next step towards bed - seems like a natural way to get him to move on, rather than just tempting him with another toy. dancing/singing sounds like fun, too. thanks for the ideas for my toolkit, yay!
 

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IMO, he's too young to understand the "we brushed for a while, now it's time to do ____". He just knows that he likes it and wants it to continue. I would take it away gently and move on to another activity that he enjoys. Perhaps choose an activity that requires him to hold something so that he has a replacement for the brush.
 

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My DS is a tooth brushing fanatic too. He wanted to brush his 3 times today <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> -- dragging me to the bathroom after each meal (we usually just do bedtime and mornings!) asking to brushhis teeth.<br><br>
I DO let him hang on to it as long as he wants. We have one of those little rubber finger condom toothbrushes, though I still keeo a careful eye.<br>
He eventually drops it, I wash it off, and we move on.
 
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