Alleviating Your Child's Fear of the Dentist
Oftentimes, children display a fear of the dentist prior to their first visit. This fear comes from an uncertainty of what to expect. As parents, you can prepare them ahead of time to alleviate these fears and set them up for a positive experience with their dentist. Here are a few tips from The Smile Dental Centre to help ease their fear.
Begin cleaning your child’s gums prior to the formation of teeth using a baby toothbrush or your finger. By getting them comfortable and familiar with good oral hygiene before their first dental visit will help prepare them for the dentist. It is recommended that your child visits the dentist within 6 months of getting their first tooth, so brushing their gums before then will help them develop these good oral habits.
To help your children prepare for their first dental visit and to get them thinking positively about the dentist, read books to them about visiting the dentist. There are a number of useful books that will help your children see their dentist in a positive light and help them understand the importance of good oral hygiene.
Share Your Experiences
Tell you children about your own dental experiences and be honest with them about what they can expect during their first visit. This will help them become more familiar with the dentist and may alleviate some of the fears that come from not knowing what to expect.
Make visiting the dentist a priority. If your child sees their dentist at regular intervals they will begin to know what to expect each time they visit. If your entire family visits the dentist regularly and at the same time then your child will come to associate the dentist with something to be done as a family. If they understand that they are not visiting the dentist alone and that the entire family goes together, it may help alleviate the fear of experiencing it alone.
Make It Fun
The Smile Dental Centre is equipped with a child’s play area where they can play games, watch movies, and have fun when they visit. If it helps, bring your child’s favourite toy or book to their appointment to give them a sense of familiarity and comfort. If they have fun during their visit, then they’ll want to make their oral hygiene a priority for years to come.
For more information visit our Children’s Dental Care page to learn more about our Smart Start First Visit. If you have any further questions or concerns, feel free to call us or stop by and we’d be happy to help answer all your questions.