When your child first starts visiting the dentist, he or she might find the experience hard. Many children are afraid of the unknown, and so find going to a new surgery a scary thought. Many of the myths around dentistry are terrifying. Your child may have encountered negative stereotypes about dentists from TV shows they watch. It is your job as a parent to dispel all those negative myths. Great tooth care should be a part of everybody’s life. That means you need to begin teaching your child about dental hygiene sooner rather than later. Here are some amazing tips to help you prepare your child for a trip to the dentist.
Choose a child-friendly dentist
All dentists will accommodate children, but some specialize in the area. Your child will feel comfortable at a surgery that deals with a lot of children. For example, Mooresville Pediatric Dentistry has a child-centric section of their surgery. That means that they can cater to young children with ease. It is best to find a surgery that can make your child feel at home. Your child will likely have to visit the dentist a few times each year. He or she will need to build a relationship with his or her dentist. Keeping the same dentist throughout childhood will mean that your child never fears the surgery.
Talk to your child
Before you take a trip to the dentist, it is important that you talk to your child. As I mentioned earlier, your child has likely heard horror stories about the dentist and fears the experience. Explain the reasons people do to the dentist to your child. Put emphasis on healthcare, rather than curing dental problems. Tell your child that going to the dentist will help him or her have healthy teeth. Your child likely fears the unknown. By talking about the dentist and giving your child a chance to ask you questions, you make the entire situation feel normal.
Avoid scare tactics
The worst thing you can do when talking to your child about the dentist is use scare tactics. Many parents use these tactics as a last resort to try and coax their children into going to the dentist. Telling your child that if they don’t go to the dentist, they will get cavities and tooth problems will only make him or her more scared. Instead, focus on the positive aspects of the dentist and steer clear from any fear mongering.
Set an example
A great way to introduce your child to the dentist, before they have an appointment, is to take them with you for a check-up. Let them sit in the surgery with you and watch the dentist examine you. Once your child sees what happens at the dentist, they should not longer fear the experience. Most dentists will let you bring your children in with you, but it is important that you ask whether you can do so first.
Teach your child about dental hygiene
When you start talking about the dentist in your home, it is a good time to start teaching your child about dental hygiene. Again, this can be a tricky subject for some children. Getting your child to brush his or her teeth, and floss is going to be difficult. You should try showing your child what to do, rather than just telling. Make your hygiene routine a communal event. Before your child goes to bed, go to the bathroom with him or her and brush your teeth. When your child can see you taking care of your teeth, he or she will want to do the same.