Thanks to all of your suggestions on “Looking for Toothbrush Help Walk of Shame,” Becca’s teeth are clean and shiny! After reading the responses to my post, I realized that I was allowing Becca to treat her toothbrush as a toy and it was time for me to change our routine a little.
I began by going out and buying two new toothbrushes– one for each bathroom. I then started a new routine. Instead of handing the toothbrush to her and allowing her to wander around the house with it (which isn’t the safest habit), Becca stands on a stool in front of the bathroom sink. We then brush our teeth together. This gives me an opportunity to model my great brushing technique 🙂 and it helps me to monitor how long she is brushing.
When I am done, I quickly run my toothbrush under running water and help Becca to do the same. At this point, I put both toothbrushes away (which sometimes requires me to peel Becca’s finger off of hers one by one). If Becca starts crying, I pick her up and divert her with a new activity (which works about 90% of the time so far). After doing this for about a week or so, Becca has begun to give me back her toothbrush when she sees that I am finishing up. Now I just need to work on her actually brushing her teeth rather than just chewing on her toothbrush!
So thanks everyone!