Learn the lyrics to Brush, Brush, Brush Your Teeth, plus a few other tried-and-true tips to get kids excited to grab that toothbrush.

happy toddler brushing teeth
Credit: Shutterstock

So you've brushed up (pun intended) on how to brush toddler teeth. But getting your toddler to actually cooperate come brush time is like pulling, well, you know. To help, we rounded up four parent-tested strategies for making dental duty easier on everyone.

Try a podcast, video, or app.

Elizabeth Flahive, of Los Angeles, says her two kids love Chompers, a two-minute podcast by Gimlet Media that releases new episodes twice a day. It gives directions and reminders on brushing in between entertaining stories, jokes, riddles, fun facts, and silly songs. Other moms liked the Disney Magic Timer app by Oral-B and Sesame Street: Healthy Teeth, Healthy Me: Brushy Brush, a video starring Elmo, which has more than 1 billion views on YouTube.

Get a high-tech toothbrush.

Interactive toothbrushes can also inspire your kids to brush their teeth. One example is the Colgate Magik. Made for children ages 5-10, it connects with an app to provide an augmented reality gaming experience. Kids unlock new worlds and win rewards for stellar tooth-brushing skills, which teaches the proper brushing technique and creates a lifelong dental hygiene habit. Parents can also monitor progress with an interactive dashboard.

Sing a song.

Make up your own or adapt a favorite tune, turning the lyrics into goofy ones all about brushing or flossing. For example, instead of “Row, row, row your boat,” Nicole Simonds, of Chicago, sings, “Brush, brush, brush your teeth ... ” Here's one version of the toothy tune to get you inspired:

Brush, Brush, Brush Your Teeth”

Brush, brush, brush your teeth

At least two times a day.

Cleaning, cleaning, cleaning, cleaning,

Fighting tooth decay.

Floss, floss, floss your teeth

Every single day.

Gently, gently, gently, gently,

Whisking plaque away.

Rinse, rinse, rinse your teeth

Every single day.

Swishing, swishing, swishing, swishing,

Fighting tooth decay.

Interact with your children.

Have your kids use their imagination while you get to work. Alexis Rodriguez Alvich, of New York City, helps her superhero-obsessed son battle villains named Plaque and Gingivitis. Or make it even sillier: “My husband tries to guess everything my daughter ate that day based on what he ‘finds’ in her teeth,” says Amanda Carmichael, of Chattanooga. Giggles ensue when he starts “finding” things like crayons and Barbie shoes along with blueberries and carrots.

Ajanta Chakraborty, of Chicago, showed her son clip art of cartoon germs digging cavities, which helped him understand the importance of brushing and gave him a “mission” to brush away the germs.

Parents Magazine