Tips to Make Your Child Comfortable at the Dentist
Tips to Make Your Child Comfortable at the Dentist
Is your child’s upcoming visit to the dentist causing you concern? Well, a trip to the dentist can make even the bravest adults anxious. It’s no surprise that your children may also feel intimidated by the dentist. Additionally, the unusual tools used by the dentist can further add to their nervousness.
Because of this, many parents avoid dental checkups as the struggle is overwhelming. Even though it may seem like a quick solution, depriving your child of regular checkups can lead to more significant problems. Regular dental visits play a pivotal role in developing good oral hygiene habits. Dentists can also help prevent minor problems before they become major issues.
So, if your children feel scared of visiting the dentist, rather than skipping the treatment, you need to work on the fears of the children. But before we go into solutions, let’s first find out what things can make your children scared.
What is dental anxiety?
Dental anxiety can take any form of fear related to visiting the dentist. It could be related to particular tools, procedures, or needles. Some children may experience anxiety even by thinking about the dentist.
Unfortunately, dental anxiety in children can lead to avoiding regular dental checkups. Such avoidance can further add to stress. Now, they have to deal with the aspects of the dentist visit that cause the most anxiety, such as local anesthesia or tooth extraction, which perpetuates the cycle.
It is why helping your child deal with anxiety will prepare them for the future. As a parent, you ensure that your child should not avoid dental visits by helping the child create a coping mechanism.
What can scare your children about dental visits?
The first step in managing anxiety is to find the areas that can make the children afraid of the dentist. At times, fears don’t have particular reasons, but children can be anxious because of:
1. The fear of a pas painful dental visit
2. Seeing or feeling the metal instruments on teeth
3. The smell or sight of the dental office
4. Not keeping up with preventive appointments
5. Worrying about the cost of dental care 6. Inadequate preparation for the first dental visit
How do you help your child overcome the fear of the dentist?
If you are worried about how you can help your child deal with dental anxiety, follow these tips.
1. Visit Regular Dental Checkups: Any repetition of things will make you more informed about the previous. The same principle applies to dental visits. If your children are prone to anxiety, they need to visit the dentist regularly to overcome their fears. Well, it does not mean that you should take your children every week, but you should not avoid dental checkups every six months. It will help the children get familiar with the dentist’s office, tools, and staff. Familiarity with the environment will develop a sense of security and safety while visiting the dentist. Early visits to the dentist will lay a basepath for good oral health and help to detect problems before they become serious. Taking your children early to the dentist will help them understand that the dentist is a regular part of their lives. When you take your children to the dentist frequently, it will make them feel less anxious during checkups.
2. Choosing the right dentist: It is very important that you choose the dentist wisely. Parents should find a dentist who can work well with children, especially those who know how to manage the behaviors of the children. So, it is sometimes more than just a dentist. The environment also plays a vital role during dental visits.
• Check if children can hear the parents.
• Can children hear or see the patients during appointments?
• Does the office have relaxing colors or pictures that kids enjoy?
Some children may experience anxiety by feeling the humming voice of dental instruments, and it can trigger anxiety.
Even if you find the dentist, it does not mean that they are the right fit for your children. Your child may associate the dentist with a painful visit and procedure or visit.
3. Give Fair Warning: Many parents like to keep dental appointments secret when they feel their child is anxious about the upcoming visit. However, there are better ways to deal with the fears. Informing your child about the upcoming dental visit will help them process their anxiety. You can also encourage the kids to ask questions and talk about what they can expect from the treatment. You could talk about what could happen during an exam, X-ray, and other related procedures. If you are going for a procedure, it is wise that you call the dentist and ask about what will happen. This familiarity can help your children know what will happen during the procedure.
4. Prepare your child and build excitement: Parents who visit the dentist regularly can help ease dental anxiety. After all, if parents can go to the dentist without any issues, children can gain confidence from that. Based on the age of your child, you can read books that will help them prepare for the dentist. If you feel at ease visiting the dentist, you might want to bring your child to your next dental cleaning, allowing them to witness firsthand that there is no need to be anxious.
Emphasize Good Oral Hygiene at Home: There could be plenty of reasons that can trigger anxiety in their kids. But most commonly, it is created after the procedure is done. They can now link the pain and discomfort after the experience. Parents can reduce the likelihood of dental procedures by helping their children to incorporate good oral habits. Brushing, flossing, and eating good food and avoiding sugary food will help them prevent dental visits.
Parents should oversee their children until their children are between 6 and 8 years old. You can also help your children by showing videos and songs about tooth brushing so that they can learn more about good oral habits.
Conclusion: Dental anxiety can create frustration and confusion. At Versailles Dental Clinic in Dubai, we are committed to helping patients of all ages overcome fears and anxiety to live their best lives with healthy teeth. If you have any questions that make you anxious, we are just a call away. Schedule an appointment.
Q1: What is dental anxiety, and how does it affect children?
A: Dental anxiety in children is a fear related to visiting the dentist, often triggered by specific tools, procedures, or even the thought of the dentist. This anxiety can lead to avoidance of regular dental checkups, causing additional stress and complicating future visits.
Q2: What are common factors that can scare children about dental visits?
A: Children may be scared due to past painful experiences, the sight or feel of dental instruments, the smell or sight of the dental office, missing preventive appointments, worries about the cost of dental care, and inadequate preparation for the first dental visit.
Q3: How can parents help their children overcome the fear of the dentist?
A: Parents can help by implementing the following tips:
• Visit Regular Dental Checkups: Regular visits help children become familiar with the dental environment, reducing anxiety during checkups.
• Choosing the Right Dentist: Select a dentist who is skilled in working with children and provides a child-friendly environment.
• Give Fair Warning: Inform your child about upcoming dental visits, encouraging them to ask questions and discuss what to expect.
• Prepare Your Child and Build Excitement: Familiarize your child with the dentist by reading books or bringing them along to your own dental appointments.
• Emphasize Good Oral Hygiene at Home: Instill good oral habits in your child, including brushing, flossing, and maintaining a healthy diet.
Q4: Why is visiting the dentist regularly crucial for children with dental anxiety?
A: Regular dental checkups lay a foundation for good oral health, help detect problems early, and make children more comfortable with the dental environment, reducing anxiety during future visits.
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Disclaimer : The content of this article is not a substitute for professional dental advice.