Most of us used to be afraid of going to the dentist in our younger days. It is only legit that the same fear shall be borne by your child as well. Going to the dentist involves going into an unventured territory where children tend to find themselves uncomfortable to associate with. Moreover, the thought of the drilling machines, loud noises, and treatment from an unknown person add to the reluctance of the child to visit the dentist. However, it is highly important to set up regular appointments, especially at the growing age when the teeth are highly vulnerable to cavities. Thus, this article intends to make the job of the parents easier by discussing some ways that can help the child overcome the fear of the dentists.
Begin with the appointments young
Children become more used to the idea of visiting the dentist early if they are introduced to it at an early age. You can make them understand how important making a regular appointment with the dentists is when it comes to the maintenance of the healthy teeth. An article suggests that you can try to instill confidence in them by telling them about the positive results and the importance of clean and strong teeth. They shall soon become aware of the necessity of the dental check-ups regularly and will become a lot more comfortable as they grow up.
Thus, it is in the best interest of your child if you take them to a dentist as soon as they turn the age of 1 or when the first tooth is visible. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry also recommends this as the ideal time for the child to have a first visit to the dentist.
Prepare Them Well
It is not really necessary that you have to introduce your child to the dentistry procedures with minute details. This may avoid your kid from becoming overwhelmed with the entire process of visiting a dentist. Since you don’t want them to become nervous and stay light-hearted instead, make sure you talk about the appointment as a way to ensure healthy and strong teeth. Besides, you can also make sure your child gets a bit acquainted with the dentist first, just so that the uncertainty of the stranger operating on their teeth does not become a fearful event.
Carrying their favorite toy along or playing the music that is soothing while the dentist checks them up shall also do a world of good to ensure their calmness. It will also bode well for them if you talk it out with them by addressing their smaller queries with a reassuring tone.
Pretend a Mock Visit
You don’t have to go to an actual dentist in order to pretend to a mock visit. You can do that with your child before you take them for their first appointment. According to an article, this shall acclimatize them with the environment of a dental clinic beforehand, which shall give a boost to their confidence during the real appointment. You can start by counting their teeth using a toothbrush, starting from 1 or A. Besides, you can act like a dentist and instill a bit positivity in them. The intention is just to make sure that they are not caught unaware during the real appointment. Thus, there is no need to make the drilling sounds or make use of the real pieces of equipment.
Steer Clear of Bribes
Many experts suggest that promising a bribe to your child, to the kind of sweets of toys, shall only raise their suspicion. If you tell your kid that they will get rewards if they see through an appointment with the dentist, the thoughts of uncertainty may pop up in their minds. They may even begin to wonder what is so fearful about the procedure that certain rewards are being offered to them. Moreover, promising sugary sweets after seeing a dentist sends a wrong message to the child. A study found out the positive relationship between high consumption of sugar and dental decay.
Hence, you must teach them how to avoid the overconsumption of sweet and junk foods to maintain oral health properly. It does not, however, mean that your child must be deprived of sweets altogether. Frequent indulgences shall give them a lot of happiness. You can bring a chocolate box for them the next time they crave for something delicious.
Be Available With Your Child
Who better than you as parents when it comes to reassuring your child? Make sure you sit right beside them when they are going for a check-up. Most of the regular appointments with the dentists do not require for the parents to not stay in the dental room. Hence, have a word with the dentist and ask them if it shall be all right for you to be available in the room while the dentist carries out his/her role. Your presence shall give them a dose of motivation, which the most soothing of the words of any other person might not.
You can also keep telling them how great they are doing while the check-up or in the case when the treatment is ongoing. In the cases of emergency or where the dentist needs to perform an operation, the oral airway shall allow them to do it with ease without obstructing the ventilation.
Be Prepared For an Agitation
It is quite common for a child to cry, shout, and whine when you take them to the dentist. This shall even exacerbate due to the fact that a stranger is operating on their teeth. However, maintain your calm and do not let that take a toll on you. The dental professionals and nurses are very well aware of such situations. They may guide you appropriately as to what steps you must take to make your child feel comfortable. Since the dentists are experts, you must put your faith and trust in them. Follow their instructions to ensure a smooth and successful dental appointment for your child.
Make your child aware that going to a dentist is not a choice, but imperative for oral health. Besides, IV Sedation Dentistry has made it quite easy for the dentist to perform treatments without letting the patient feeling pain or getting hurt. The smile is the gateway to a personality, which is why it makes it highly important for you to teach your child the necessity of a dental appointment and they shall thank you for the years to come.
Ross is a blogger who loves to write especially in the Health and dental vertical. He has written many informative blogs in other verticals too like personal development, unique gifting blogs etc.