8 Tips to Help Kids Overcome Fear of Dentists.

kids smile

As humans, we are all scared of the unknown. To an adult, going to the dentist is a routine part of life, but for a kid, especially one who has never been, the dentist is unfamiliar and scary. children often think going to the dentist will hurt, or they simply don’t know what to expect. kids may have seen you recover from a pulled tooth or root canal and imagine the worst, or they simply equate going to the dentist with going to the doctor, where they receive vaccinations or other uncomfortable things happen.

To help ease future visits for your kids, follow these steps so that he will feel comfortable and more relaxed.

1-Start early 

The earlier a toddler visits the dentist, the better. “This will provide your child with a ‘dental home’ where all her needs — whether a periodic preventive visit or an emergency — are going to be taken care of,” says Rhea Haugseth, D.M.D., president of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. it is best that the primary visit starts at age 1 or when the primary tooth is visible.

2-Keep it Simple

When preparing for a visit, especially the first time, try not to include too many details. Doing so will raise more questions, and adding more information about an extra treatment like a filling he might need may cause unnecessary anxiety. Keep a positive attitude when discussing an upcoming visit, but don’t give your kid false hope. avoid saying that everything is going to be fine because if your child finishes up needing treatment, he might lose trust in both the dentist and you.

3-Watch your Words with Kids

Don’t use the (shot), (hurt) or (pain) words with kids. Let the staff introduce their vocabulary to kids to assist them to get through difficult situations, you can tell your child that the dentist is trying to find “sugar bugs” so he can clean them off their teeth. “My favorite thing to possess parents tell their child is that we are getting to check their smile and count their teeth — that’s it, nothing else,” says Michael J. Hanna, D.M.D., a pediatric dentist in McKee Rocks, Pennsylvania, and a national spokesperson of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. Use positive phrases like “clean, strong, healthy teeth” to form the visit seem fun and good instead of scary and alarming.

4-Play the Dentist with your kids

Before the first dentist appointment, play pretends together with your kid to be the dentist, and therefore the patient. Count your little one’s teeth by starting with the amount 1 or the letter A. Avoid making drilling noises or lining up other “instruments.” you’ll even delay a mirror and show her how the dentist might check out and check her teeth. Then let your child role-play by employing a toothbrush to wash the teeth of a stuffed animal or doll. The key’s getting her conversant in the routine so that she’s easier for the important visit.
Picture books with detailed illustrations and easy-to-understand language also can help children get a way of what to expect. Read Spongebob Squarepants’ Behold No Cavities! A Visit to the Dentist or Dora the Explorer’s Shows Me Your Smile!: A Visit to the Dentist.

5-Prepare Yourself for Some Fussing.

It is normal and age-appropriate for a kid to cry, whine, wiggle, and not want to be examined by a stranger, stay calm and remember that the dentist and his staff are wont to working with children and have seen their share of tantrums. Let the care professionals At Murphy Orthodontics guide you; they could ask you to remain at a distance or to carry your little one’s hand, which can provide comfort and stop him from grabbing any dental instruments.

6-Do not try to relate.

Some parents take their children with them to their own dentist appointment, but experts say this is a mistake. Parents themselves might feel anxious about the visit without even realizing it, and their child might sense those fears. Telling “war stories” about extractions, root canals, or other negative experiences will also trigger anxiety, especially because your child may not even have those procedures. Taking your child to a sterile, adult office also gives the wrong impression, whereas most pediatric dentists make their offices kid-friendly — some have video games, pleasing pictures on the walls, and movies or TV shows kids enjoy.

7-Avoid Bribery.

Many experts don’t recommend promising your child a special treat if she behaves well at the dentist. Doing so will only increase their apprehension. Saying, “If you do not fuss or cry, you will get a lollipop,” might make your baby think, “What’s so bad about the dentist that I’d want to cry?” Promising a sugary treat also sends the incorrect message after a dentist emphasizes having clean, healthy teeth by avoiding sweets which will cause cavities. Instead, after the visit is over, praise your child for her good behavior and bravado. Every once during a while, surprise her with a sticker or a little toy as an encouragement.

Read also: Seven Foods to Keep Your Child’s Teeth Healthy

8-Emphasize the importance of the dentist for your Kids

Teach your kids that visiting the dentist may be a necessity, not a choice, which the dentist will look out of his teeth so that they’re strong enough for him to eat. you would possibly also explain that the dentist helps keep cavities cornered and ensures that his patients will have a gorgeous smile for years to return.
Keep in mind that it is perfectly normal for children to be fearful – some are afraid of being separated from their parents; others are afraid of the unknown; others are afraid of being injured. A dentist who treats children will know how to cope with your child’s fears and anxiety and put them at ease.

If your dentist does not take steps to ease your child’s fears, consider finding another dentist. It is important that your child has a positive experience at the dentist during their early years so that he or she does not develop an ongoing fear of oral health care providers. Read also: Six Month Smiles®

We love our patients and love to help them form healthy dental life that will last them a lifetime. For more information call us to answer all of your questions so get an appointment today.

Recourse: healthline.com