Many children feel nervous about going to the dentist, which can make appointments difficult. However, there are things parents and caregivers can do to make kids feel more at ease about dental appointments.
Here are four ways to help your son or daughter feel better about going to the dentist.
Finding a dentist who focuses on the pediatric part of his or her practice can make a big difference in your child’s experience. Take the time to select a dentist who knows how to work with young children and put them at ease. If possible, take your child to meet his or her dentist prior to the first appointment to establish a good relationship in a low-stress situation.
Many children are fearful of going to the dentist because they don’t know what to expect. The dental office is an unfamiliar environment that can be intimidating and overwhelming for a young child. By providing your child with as much information as possible prior to the appointment, it may be easier to get him or her to relax. In addition, you should answer any questions he or she may have honestly, but in a way that is not frightening.
One of the best ways to make sure your kids feel comfortable going to the dentist? Set an example by going to the dentist yourself. If your children see that you see the dentist on a regular basis and hear you speak positively about your experience, they are more likely to develop a similar attitude themselves.
Some appointments simply will not be fun for your child, especially if he or she needs a filling or other invasive treatment. In this situation, it may be helpful to provide a distraction. Try planning something enjoyable to do after the appointment to help take your child’s mind off the unpleasant task at hand.
As a parent or caregiver, it is your responsibility to make sure your child gets the dental care he or she needs. With a little effort, you can help your child have a positive experience at the dentist’s office and teach him or her to value good oral health.