How Parents Can Calm Their Children’s Dental Anxiety

You might be wondering how you can calm your child’s dental anxiety.

Apart from regular and proper brushing and flossing, it is important that your child visits his dentist regularly to keep his teeth and gums healthy.

But as many parents will attest, a trip to the dental office can be a test of will between parent and child. Perhaps it’s the bright lights, or maybe the shiny dental tools, or maybe even the strange and unfamiliar sounds. Quite simply, dental anxiety can undermine your child’s dental health if left unchecked.

Fortunately, there are a few things that parents can do to ease the anxieties and fears of their children when visiting the dentist.

The sooner you start, the better

Quite simply, the sooner you take your child to the dentist, the better. This gives your child ample time to familiarize himself with the dental office, the face and voice of his dentist, and even the mere act of having his mouth checked. Ideally, kids should see their dentist at age one or after the first tooth becomes visible.

Don’t make too much of a fuss about it

Your child takes his cues from you. As much as possible, try to keep things positive but avoid providing too many details about the visit or make promises that you can’t keep. Otherwise, your child may feel betrayed and will certainly have misgivings about his next visits to the dentist.

That also extends to the words you say to your child. As much as possible, avoid saying words that may scare him. Instead, take your cues from the dental staff. Again, keep things on a positive note.

Play pretend

Before the actual visit, you and your child can play pretend, with you playing the role of the dentist. Use your child’s toothbrush and count your kid’s teeth. To generate positive interest for the visit, you can even hold a mirror in front of your child while counting his teeth.

Afterward, you can let your child play the role of the dentist on his favorite toys.

Visit pediatric dentists

Quite simply, pediatric dentists are less intimidating and more welcoming. One of the worst things that you can do is to take your child with you on your next dental appointment. For one, your child can pick up on your own anxiety about the treatment you will be undergoing. Second, the dental office for adult patients can give wrong cues to your child.

Be prepared

Depending on the age of your child, you may have to expect some fussing. That’s only natural. Pediatric dentists are trained to handle these situations. Follow the dentist’s cues.

It would be beneficial to schedule your dental visit at a time when your child is well-rested and has been fed. Under no circumstance should you bribe your child. This only sends the wrong message to him.

We know that kids can be nervous to visit the dentist. Contact Surfside Kids Dental in Land Park and we can help ease your little ones dental anxiety.

Catch ya later!

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