How to help a child that is scared of the dentist?
It is a normal occurrence in childhood for kids to be scared of the dentist, and that is because children don’t understand why they have to be subjected to a treatment that requires whirring metal machines and masked men. There are a lot of unusual sounds, lights, smalls, and other unfamiliar activities going on in the dentist’s office that might freak out a kid. Moreover, these kids have to stay still while strangers put random tools in their mouths.
This fear of dentists is normal for most children. However, it is essential to curb it early in life. Children who grow up fearing the dentist can become dental-phobic adults, and according to statistics, 9-20% of them skip dental appointments because of anxiety.
If you have a child who is scared of the dentist, or you want to brace yourself in advance, you are in luck today. This article will teach you essential tips to your child or ward overcome their fear for the dentist. Read on to find out how to convince your kids that a dental clinic could be a great place!
Tips to help your kids overcome their fear for the dentist
Here are some useful tips that could help you convince your that the dentist’s office is not a bad place after all.
Visit the dentist early enough
It is important to expose your child to dental cleanings early enough to acclimate to the dental environment. The Smilist Dental Huntington is usually ready to receive clients when they notice their first baby teeth. If your child starts understanding specific locations, the dentist’s office must have become familiar and will be one of the places they look forward to visiting. Also, visiting the dentists early can help avoid problems associated with toddler tooth decay.
Children learn more through play. Therefore, it is vital to make tooth-care time as playful as possible to encourage the child. When you want to teach your child about the importance of maintaining good oral hygiene, you can include fun activities that will fascinate the child, and when it is time to visit the dentist, the child is not perturbed.
It is daunting enough for kids to visit the dentist, and you don’t want to make it worse by instilling fear in your child with negative words. Though it is essential, to be honest with the child, it is also best to restrain oneself from using words like “hurt” and “pain.”
The child needs to understand that the dentist is there to help him become healthier. Even when your child asks questions about the dentist, keep your answers simple and positive. Avoid telling kids about the pain; instead, tell them that the dentist will help ensure their teeth remain in good shape.
Take them along for your appointments
Children look up to their parents, believing they can do anything they see their parents do. When next you have an appointment with the dentist, take your child along to see how you handle your session. They will be encouraged by how friendly everyone is, and they will look forward to visiting the dentist.
It is essential to be patient with your child as a parent, especially the first few times. Kids will most likely throw tantrums, scream, and cry during their dental session, which will put any parent off. But you need to maintain calmness and try not to lose your temper because that can aggravate the child’s anxieties and fears.
If you need to, you can take a break for a few minutes and return when you are calmer. Your patience during this time will prove to the child that it is nothing to worry about. Hold your child’s hand if you can and speak reassuring words during the appointment; however, be prepared to step aside if the dentist requests it.
Visit pediatric dentistry specialists
Since adult dental offices are designed for adult clients, the environment can be scary to kids, especially with large equipment, white walls, and masked teams. On the other hand, a pediatric dentistry office will be designed to suit the need of children, hence the bright colors, smaller equipment, and friendly teams.
Parents’ approach to their child’s initial dental appointment will determine how they react to dentists even in adulthood. It is imperative to make deliberate efforts to ensure that the child develops a positive mindset for dental appointments. If you are confused about how to do this, we have discussed some tips in this article to help you.