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15 Oct 2021

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Preparing Your Child for Their Trip to the Dentist
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Preparing Your Child for Their Trip to the Dentist

As an adult, you are probably apprehensive about visiting the dentist. The same case applies to your little one. They are scared of a dentist examination.  There are so many instruments and unfamiliar faces that are enough to cause anxiety.

However, dental visits are essential for children, just as they are for adults. It is usually a chance for the doctor to spot and fix any issues you as a parent do not notice.  Here are some tips to help you better prepare your little one for a dental visit.

Reading books or watching programs about dental checkups

Children love association. They will be more willing to visit the dentist if their favorite character does the same. This method will make their dental appointments easier because they already know what to expect.

Show lots of excitement

Children learn a lot by imitation. They are observant and keen on those around them. Therefore, if you are scared of dental visits, do not let it show, especially with the child. It is important to tell your child positive things about the dentist. Keep off any negative words that may frighten your little one. For example, instead of saying, “machine,” you can call it a “Disney chair.” This gets your child excited as you are using familiar terms.

Roleplaying

You can role play by pretending to be the dentist and them the patient. Or your child can be the dentist and you, the patient. Your spouse will be the dental assistant. This is the ideal time to introduce your young one to proper oral care and show them how to brush their teeth correctly.

Bring along their favourite toy

Does your child have a favourite toy or blanket? Make sure to carry it along during your dental visit. When they have something familiar to hold, they will feel more safe and relaxed.

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Time the dental appointment properly

Ensure you book dental visits during those times of the day when your child is most relaxed and in a good mood. Children have a pattern of times when they are in their best spirits and others when they are in their worst behavior.

Pick a time that is convenient for your child when they are in their right mood. You don’t want to go for a dental checkup with the child is hungry or tired.  Avoid giving them sugar or caffeine before the dental checkup.  Where possible, get to the doctor’s clinic early so they can play with toys in the waiting area.

Stay positive

It is essential to be happy and cheerful when discussing the dentist with your child. You don’t have to be all that gushy, but do remain positive when talking about the dentist. Let your child know that the appointments are normal and simple. This way, your little one will have a better attitude about what to expect during the dental checkup.

 Reward them

You already know what gets your child excited. Offer to give them something that they love. It could be a new toy or a trip to their favorite restaurant. Promising to reward them if they are well-behaved at the dentist will motivate them to be on their best behavior. They will try their best to remain calm because they will be expecting a reward after the visit.

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 Conclusion

A dental visit is a new and sometimes frightening experience for your child.  By using all the tips, we have shared above, you can make your little one’s first visit easy.  However, if your child’s initial encounter is disastrous, do not worry. Know their limits and try another time. Dental appointments are vital for keeping your baby’s oral health in check.

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