Majority of kids have a fear of going to the dentist, but it is necessary for your child to visit the dentist. Dentistry for kids is often overlooked as it does not seem important, but the habits developed in childhood last for the entire life. Therefore, it is important to educate your child about frequently visiting the doctor to prevent future tooth problems and bad oral hygiene.
Here are a few ways you can help your child overcome the fear of dentists.
The earlier you make your child go to the dentist, the better it is. Consulting a family dentist can be helpful as your child will not feel as intimidated. Dentists recommend starting at the age of 1 or when the first tooth is coming. This will show the child that dental health is a priority in the household.
Keeping it Simple
When you are talking to your kid about visiting the dentist or family dentist for the first time, make sure you are not giving too many details. Giving details to your kid will raise questions resulting in unnecessary anxiety for your child. Staying positive before going to the dentist will allow your child to feel less anxious about the dental checkup, but make sure you are not giving any false hope. By saying things like “everything will be fine” you will break your child’s trust.
Using words like hurt and pain can really get to your child, so let the dentist handle your kid with the dental vocabulary. If your child insists, you can tell them that the dentists will be looking for the “sugar bugs” inside their mouth, or the dentist will count their teeth during the checkup.
Before visiting your family dentist, you can play pretend with your child. You will need a toothbrush and you can begin counting your child’s teeth. Avoid making any weird sounds that could scare them. Hold up a mirror and ask your child to check his or her teeth. This way he or she will be ready and positive about the first visit.
Give No Relations
Parents often tell their kids about their first visit to the dentist. This should not be done because the kid will begin to relate his or her first experience with their parents. Bad experiences could cause your child to have a lot of anxiety. For the first time, take your kid to a dentist that specializes in dentistry for kids or to your family dentist.
Promote Oral Health and Hygiene
Tell your kid that dentist visits are a necessity, not a choice. Make them aware of the fact that the dentist will take care of their teeth and help them keep their teeth strong and clean. Explain how the dentist will help their teeth become stronger and fight against any cavities. A good dentist can be your child’s best friend.