It is natural for children to be curious and adventurous, very common for them to get dirt all over in their bid to explore their surroundings. However, there are a few things that might terrify a child into stagnation. Among many things, a clinic ran by a strange man in a scrub suit looking to scrutinize whatever teeth they have – i.e. a trip to the dentist. Yes, your child’s trip to the dental clinic may be too intimidating for them, and if they develop a negative first impression on your family dentist, maintaining their dental health can become a nightmare for you. The good news is there are actually things that you can do to prevent this. Just like every other irrational fear, there are steps you can take to avert your child’s woes in their first ever trip to the dental clinic:
Problems can be averted by good communication; hence one should never downplay its importance. Start by talking to your child about the importance of maintaining healthy teeth. Then tell them who a dentist is, what dentists do to your dental health, and that dentists are friends, not punishers.
Set a good example
Good communication is not enough if your child does not see you practising dental care. Remember, parents, are a child’s role model, if they see you do something, they will see it as moral and correct. Always brush your teeth, floss regularly and take them to your own dental visit.
Choose your dentist and choose well
It’s ok to be choosy, remember your child’s dental health is on the line. Pick a dentist who is friendly, warm and welcoming, someone who takes the extra step to make patients feel comfortable whenever they sit on the dental chair. You told your child that dentists are friends, now you have to prove it.
Reward your child
Make them feel excited by promising a trip towards somewhere exciting afterwards. Though strenuous activities are not advisable after your trip to the dentist, take them for ice cream or for a movie. Whatever it is, make sure your child would have fun to keep them interested in their next dental visit.
Practice and start early
Now speaking of good examples and communication, always know the importance of practice. Start them early, train them how to brush their teeth very early on, and be stern yet caring about their brushing schedules. Pick a fancy colourful toothbrush if you have to and make sure your child develops a habit of brushing their teeth after meals.