Pokemon App Encourages Kids to Brush Their Teeth

Richard Gawel


Children can catch Pokemon while improving their oral hygiene habits with Pokemon Smile. The augmented reality mobile app lets players “rescue” Pokemon from cavity-causing bacteria by brushing their teeth.

Using the device’s front-facing camera, the app monitors how well the user is brushing. Once players brush away all of the bacteria, they can catch one of the more than a hundred Pokemon available in the game for their collection. Regular brushing will unlock virtual hats that will appear on the user’s head during the game. 

The app sends up to three notifications each day to remind users that it’s time to brush. Users also can set session times to one to three minutes. The ADA recommends that everyone brushes their teeth for at least two minutes twice a day.

“Pokemon Smile was developed to turn brushing your teeth into a fun activity,” said Tsunekazu Ishihara, president and CEO of the Pokemon Company. “Kids develop good habits. Even kids who don’t look forward to brushing their teeth. Kids can brush their teeth to catch Pokemon, which makes brushing their teeth something to look forward to every day.”

Pokemon Smile is a free app with no in-app purchases for Apple and Android devices.

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