It is essential to take your kids to the dentist regularly to keep their teeth healthy and maintain their oral hygiene. The problem, however, is that children get scared of the dentist. Most of them are petrified by the unfamiliar surroundings of a dental clinic. Besides, the sight of sharp objects being put into their mouths can also be scary.
Since you eventually have to take your kids to the dentist, it is advisable to find ways to ease their fears. Here are tips on how to prepare kids for dentists.
When you take your children to the dentist from an early age, they become familiar with the dental experience. They also learn the importance of routine visits to the dentist, which eases their fears significantly. Experts recommend taking your child to the dentist on their first birthday or when their first tooth erupts. Also, it would help if you considered taking the youngsters for a reassuring introductory visit that aims to ease them into regular dental exams.
Keep it Simple
If you are going to the dentist for the first time, avoid sharing too many details. Being detailed not only leads to many questions, but it also makes your child anxious. Try to be as practical as you can without giving false hope. Lying to your kid that everything will be okay can make them lose trust in you and the dentist in case anything goes wrong.
Watch Your Language
It would be best if you avoid using negative words such as hurt, pain, and shot when talking to your child about dentists. Instead, it would be best if you used encouraging words like clean and healthy. The same applies when discussing dental complications. Try not to use terms such as ‘tooth decay’ and ‘cavities.’Instead, use friendlier words such as ‘sugar bugs’ to refer to such problems. Keep in mind that favourable terms are not used to fool a child; contrarily, they are useful in setting a positive tone before visiting the dental clinic.
Recreate a Mock Dental Visit
Practice makes perfect, more so when you want to ease the fears of visiting a dentist. You can prepare your kid for the next dental check-up by recreating a mock dental clinic experience at home. During the mock dental appointment, you can count your kid’s teeth and hold up a mirror to show them how a dentist will examine their mouth. Although the objective is to simulate a real dental clinic, avoid making drilling noises. These can make your child more fearful and increase nervousness.
Take Your Child to a Pediatric Dentist
A smart way of keeping your child at ease is by taking them to a pediatric dentist. This is because such doctors are trained to treat kids and understand how children behave. Even better, pediatric dental clinics have video games, kids’ movies, pictures, and other stuff that children find enjoyable.