Some children are afraid to receive dental care. As a parent, you may notice that your youngster appears anxious as soon as you mention an upcoming dental appointment. Nevertheless, there are some measures that you can take to help calm your child's fears and ensure that they feel more comfortable receiving their dental care. Here are a few of those measures.
Introduce Their Dentist Ahead of Time
If your child has never met a dentist before, it can be helpful to introduce the little one to their dental provider ahead of time. Children are often apprehensive around strangers. Allowing the child to interact with their dentist before the actual dental appointment can help them become more comfortable in the dentist's presence.
Reward Their Efforts
If your youngster cries and wiggles about during multiple dental appointments, they may develop an unsavory pattern of behavior that surfaces during every dental visit. As a result, the visits may take on a negative undertone, and your child may dread going to the dental office.
You can help your child form a positive association with the visits by offering them prizes for their model behavior in the dental chair. The prizes don't have to be edible. Instead, they could include a playdate at the park or a small toy or trinket. As long as the reward is something that the youngster values, it can help them look forward to their dental visits.
Use Words to Paint a Positive Picture
Some people develop dental fears as children after hearing horror stories of painful dental treatments. Thus, when discussing dental procedures, be sure to use positive wording. Avoiding words that elicit images of pain and discomfort can help minimize your child's apprehension about their dental appointments.
Let Them Watch You
When you visit your dentist, bring your child along. If they see that you experience little-to-no discomfort as your teeth are cleaned and examined, they are likely to feel more at ease about their own dental treatments. In addition, dental tools and equipment will seem more familiar and less threatening.
Explain the Positive Effects of Dental Care
Sometimes, a child will embrace an activity more readily if they understand its benefits. By explaining how dentists help protect the health of your child's teeth and gums, you can help your child look forward to their dental treatments. To convey the positive effects of dental care, show them pictures of white, healthy teeth.
To schedule a dental appointment for your child, contact the office of a pediatric dental clinic in your local area.