If you have young children, then a visit to the dentist may be a stressful experience that you do not look forward to. It is normal that a child may be afraid of visiting the dentist. This could be because of a bad experience or an unhappy memory, or even for no reason at all.
When your child does not enjoy going to the dentist, then it is generally going to be the case that you are going to have a bad time, too. Although this fear can be understandable, it is possible to help your child overcome their negative feelings about having a dental check-up.
Planning Your Dentist Visit
If you know that you have an upcoming dental appointment for your child or children, then there are some steps you can take to prepare.
These steps include:
- Talking to your child about what to expect
- Being positive
- Rewarding your child
You can read on to learn more about these four actions and how they can help you prepare a child to have a pleasant trip to the dentist.
Talking to Your Child About What to Expect
If your child has been to the dentist before, then they may already know what to expect. If it is your child’s first visit, then it is important to explain the process to them. If you have not yet registered your child with a dentist, then make sure you do this sooner rather than later. You could consider signing yourself up at the same one but consider your individual needs. For example, if you need more cosmetic procedures, such as dental implants, then you are better off contacting Byers Station Dental in Chester County to do so, who are experts in such treatments than your average dental practice.
Explain to your child that this appointment is going to be a very brief and very simple procedure. It will be a routine visit during which the dentist is going to take a quick look at their teeth. If there are additional concerns raised in the appointment that relate to possible treatments, then you can discuss this as and when necessary.
Role-playing a dental appointment with your child is a simple way to show them that there is nothing to fear. This can be a fun game that also helps them to know what to expect during their visit.
You can set up a basic DIY dental chair in your home and you can role-play the patient while your child role-plays the dentist, or vice-versa. This will show your child that there is nothing to fear or to be stressed out about.
Being positive and excited about the upcoming appointment is a great way to encourage your child to feel the same.
Using positive language and explaining how helpful the dentist will be for keeping your child’s teeth happy and healthy is a good idea. When you do this, your little one will start to connect the dentist to good things, such as a bright smile and a healthy mouth.
Rewarding Your Child
Planning a reward for after the dental appointment is a simple way to encourage your child to feel good about the process.
When they are thinking about what is going to happen after the appointment, they will place less emphasis on the appointment itself. Their focus will be on the fun that is to come later, and you can then have a great time enjoying this reward together.