Helpful Brushing Tips For Kids With Autism & Sensory Processing Disorder
Kids who have autism and/or sensory processing disorder can often become overwhelmed by everyday tasks that most of us execute without a second thought. These times often bring about tears, yelling, and meltdowns. One of the most common times for this to happen is when a child must brush their teeth. This task, which must be completed twice per day, becomes stressful and anxiety inducing for these kids and for their parents. Oral hygiene is a crucial component of overall health. So, it’s important to find creative yet simple ways to encourage your child with autism or a sensory processing disorder to be more cooperative when it comes to brushing their teeth. Read on for some of our favorite tips to make the process less stressful for everyone.
Regular toothbrushes may be too harsh for kids with autism. Choose a brush with softer or silicone bristles for a gentler experience. Another fun option is to find your child an electric toothbrush with his favorite character or colors on it. This can make the process more enjoyable for your child and might also help with problems maintaining the up and down motions needed for effective cleaning.
Non-Foaming and Differently Flavored Toothpastes
Many children with autism have a better tolerance for unflavored and non-foaming toothpastes, which can be overwhelming to some children’s senses. Others enjoy child-friendly flavors like fruit punch and bubblegum. For children who have problems with the texture of traditional kinds of toothpaste, dentists recommend dental gels or toothpastes that are designed specifically without a gritty texture. There are so many options that can meet the needs of any child who may struggle with a traditional brushing experience.
Children with autism often want to finish brushing as soon as possible, so they may struggle to brush for the entire two-minute period recommended. Fortunately, there are options to help with this. You can find toothbrushes that light up with a timer, buy a traditional timer to keep in your bathroom or set a timer with a fun ringtone on your device. You can also learn a two-minute song that you can sing while your child brushes.
Consider developing a rewards system for your child for appropriate tooth brushing. This can be a fun way for your child to earn rewards or work towards a goal. For instance, your child can earn a star each time they brush their teeth. After they earn a certain number of stars, they can cash them in for a special trip, a favorite meal, or an extra game.
LIVFRESH Dental Gel
LIVFRESH Dental Gel is a pioneer in the world of toothpastes. It uses a combination of different ingredients that have been proven to deep clean and remove plaque, and it doesn’t include fluoride. This toothpaste promises “results with safety”, without the need to use harsh abrasives or detergents. Perfect for any child with autism or a sensory processing disorder. Check out the LIVFRESH line of dental products to find the products you need for your child.