If you are like many parents, when it comes to taking your kids to the dentist, you probably dread it. Why? Many kids are afraid of the dentist, and it can be a huge challenge to keep your kids calm. Fortunately, there are a few things that you can do to help keep your kids calm at the dentist:
Choose a Paediatric Dentist
One of the most important things to do to keep your kids calm at the dentist, is to make sure you are taking them to a child-friendly dentist. Paediatric dentists typically have more child-friendly offices, treatment pods and staff. This will certainly help your child feel more at ease since they know how to answer your child’s questions and make them feel more comfortable with the situation.
Tell Your Child What Will Happen
Another thing that you can do to help keep your kids calm at the dentist, is tell them what will happen in a child-friendly way. For instance, instead of telling your child the dentist will use an explorer to detect cavities in their teeth, tell them the dentist is just counting their teeth. Tell them that the dentist will just be cleaning with water mostly, but that it’s done with a neat spray. Sometimes, even water will scare children because they simply don’t know what it is, with the different sounds and tools they see at the dentist. You also might want to consider a meet and greet with the dentist.
Refrain From Talking About Pain or Discomfort
You also want to make sure that you are not telling your child that anything will hurt or be uncomfortable. You want to be sure that you don’t share any stories about unpleasant experiences that you have had with a dentist. It is best to always stay positive when speaking to your child about the dentist. If they are getting fillings, explain to them that they might feel a little poke, but that will ensure they don’t feel pain the rest of the time.
Share All of the Good Things About the Dentist
Also, consider using the tactic where you tell them all of the good things about the dentist. Tell them that there are toys there, that they will be able to pick out their own toothbrush and that their smile will look white and bright. Even small children want to show off their smiles.
Start Them as Young as Possible
The American Dental Association recommends that children start going to the dentist within six months of their baby teeth erupting. Children who start earlier tend to be less frightened of the dentist than children who go when they are older.
Set Up a Pretend Visit
Finally, you may want to set up a pretend dental visit in your own home. You can use older children who have already been to the dentist as an example, and then the child who has the appointment. Perform a fake exam on them, simply so they know what will occur when they have their actual appointment.
Though no parent looks forward to taking their frightened child to the dentist, the above tactics can help to calm their fears and make the appointment much more pleasant.
Informational credit to C U Smile
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