The importance of children’s dentistry as it pertains to their dental and overall health is clear. Taking steps to ensure your child’s dental health is in good shape is a great way to get them motivated about keeping up with their oral health for the long term. One of the challenges about getting kids to the dentist is that they may have some apprehension or fears about the dentist. Starting early and keeping your child on track with their oral health is important. Below you will find helpful ways to improve your kid’s dental visit.
How to Improve Your Kid’s Dental Visit
Adding to the list of tasks you have to do as a parent can be daunting. However, getting your child excited about their oral health when they are young can take the burden off of you in the long run. Consider the following tips to help improve your child’s next dental visit.
Roughly 9% of children experience dental anxiety. Getting your child familiar with the dentist at a young age can help reduce their anxiety about the dentist office. Most dentists recommend taking your child to the dentist once their first tooth erupts, or no later than their first birthday. Starting early can help ensure that the dentist can catch any potential dental issues early on, in addition to getting your child used to going to the dentist.
Play Pretend in Advance:
One of the best ways to get your child excited about the dentist is through play. Children learn by watching and modeling your behavior. Find a fun dentist toy set and start talking to your child about the importance of taking care of their oral health. This can help prepare them for the tools, sounds, and atmosphere of a dental office before their first visit.
Find a Family Dentist:
A family dentist is skilled in treating family members of all ages, including children. They understand the unique nature of working with kids. A family dentist can distract your child during the visit and get you out of the office much faster. This can be highly beneficial for your child as they will feel much more comfortable with a family dentist in Arcadia. Having a good dental visit can ensure your child wants to come back the next time without issue.
Discuss the Visit:
You’ll need to make the discussion age-appropriate, but it’s important to talk to your child about their upcoming dental visit. Use positive language about how the visit will go, the sounds they may hear, and what they may see. You can also explain how important oral health is so they understand why they need to keep going to the dentist. Getting your child familiar with the dentist and educating them on the role they have in their health can be really helpful for your child.
Letting Your Child Lead:
Children love autonomy and expressing themselves. You can let your child lead when it comes to the day of the dental appointment. They can open the door, walk-in, talk with the receptionist, and lead the way to the dentist in Arcadia. This can help them feel a sense of control over the appointment and feel empowered versus fearful. Talk with your child before and get them excited about their big day!
One of the best ways to get through a difficult appointment is having fun plans afterward. Plan a fun day after the appointment by heading to the park, having lunch, or going swimming. Plan something fun that your child really likes to do for after the appointment. This can help ease some anxiety and give them something to look forward to after the appointment.