How Brushies can Help Special Needs Children
Parenting can be fun and rewarding, but there are many times when it can also be a hassle. Certain activities are necessary, such as brushing teeth which itself is an undesired task that all children need to learn. A majority of kids will find it tedious, and even dread it or resist it on a regular basis.
This can be extra difficult for parents whose children have special needs. There are just some extra complications that come into play with such children. It can be difficult to communicate the importance of such activities with your child or even find an effective way to encourage their brushing behavior.
There are certain things parents can do in this trying time. First and foremost, try to understand what it is that makes tooth brushing so unbearable. If they have troubles personally explaining what their problem is, try to identify it yourself by watching their behaviors and keep a look out for two common problems.
Is it a sensory problem? For many special needs children, the sensation of brushing their teeth or using toothpaste may be unbearable. If you believe this is your child’s challenge, try to make the brushing experience more comfortable for them. If your child is easily overstimulated, try to find a less intense toothpaste flavor and try to shy away from an electric toothbrush. Another, less conventional, way you can solve this is by trying to distract your child. If you can distract your child with something they find enjoyable it can take their attention away from the bothersome stimulations. Maybe you can have them brush their teeth in front of their favorite television program or even listen to one of their favorite songs. Another method is by using brushing educational apps, such as Brushies, when it is time for them to brush their teeth. This application is a fun and colorful game that can help you track their behavior.
Maybe your child has a hard time with instructions. Some special needs children need to learn things a little differently, and oftentimes this can make it hard for a parent to try to verbally explain something to their child. This can be just as frustrating for your child as it is for you. Never try to tell your child that “this is easy” or compare them to other children. Instead, try to find a way of learning that works for them. For many people, of all situations learning via hands-on methods is often the most effective. Due to its design, Brushies utilizes how your child learns motor skills by virtually rewarding your child for proper movements. Even if you notice that your child finds it difficult to learn via instructions, most children with special needs have no difficulty in learning motor behaviors using this method.
Every child is different and it is important that you do everything you can to assess their situation to try to help them in the most effective way possible. It is always a good idea to consult with your personal pediatrician and dentist to see if they have any advice for your situation.