If you have a child who does not easily become acclimated to new situations or experiences, you may be concerned that the little one will not respond well to routine dental visits. Here are a few things you can do to help ensure your child enjoys going to the dentist.
Celebrate dental visits.
Starting with the first routine dental visit, celebrate immediately after the appointment. The celebration doesn't have to be expensive or elaborate, but it should help reiterate that a dental visit is an important, positive event.
A play date at the park or a simple visit to a dollar store for a small toy will help build positive associations with dental care in the child's mind. As the little one grows older, these associations can help minimize the chance of the child developing dental fears and anxiety.
Let the child tag along during your dental appointments.
A child may be apprehensive about a dental visit because he or she fears the unknown. By letting your youngster accompany you to one of your routine dental appointments, you can allow your child to see what happen to a patient at a dental visit. Once the child sees what routine dental services entail, the youngster is less likely to be afraid when it is his or her turn to receive care.
Purchase a toy dental kit and role play.
Another way to help your child enjoy dental care is to play dental games. Allowing the child to assume the role of a dentist while pretending to care for your teeth can be fun for you and your little one. In addition, it allows the child to view the dental professionals as non-threatening.
Once you have had a turn as the patient, reverse the roles with your child. You can discuss the different services that your child may receive at a real dental visit, such as a cleaning and x-rays.
Encourage your child to brush and floss well.
The better the health of your child's teeth, the more pleasant his or her dental visits are likely to be. Routine dental services involve little to no discomfort. However, the treatment of a deep cavity may require an injection of anesthetic. If you child already fears needles, the experience can be traumatic. Thus, it is important to encourage your child to care for his or her teeth properly through regular brushing and flossing. Good oral hygiene can help your little one avoid the need for restorative care.
For more ways to help your child enjoy dental visits, schedule an appointment with a pediatric dentist, such as at Pedodontic Associates Inc, in your area.