Did you know that a whopping 20% of children are scared of the dentist? Whether it is unfamiliar tools, a previous painful experience, or just a fear of the unknown, dental phobia that develops early on can make visiting the dentist a nightmare. Fortunately, a children’s dentist in Newtown is here to share six clever tips for making your child’s trip to the dentist easier!
Tip #1: Start Dental Visits Early
Your child’s first trip to the dentist should be shortly after their first tooth immerges. If these trips begin early and remain frequent, it can prevent your child from feeling the anxiety that comes from going to a new place or meeting a new person. These trips can especially be beneficial if you have a dentist who is more of a family member than a stranger.
Tip #2: Read Books or Play Games About Going to the Dentist
For children, much of their inspiration comes from the books they read and the games they play. Before even stepping foot into the dentist’s office, you can use these activities to showcase their favorite characters visiting the dentist. This can give them an idea of what it means to “go to the dentist” and how they should act once they are there.
Tip #3: Avoid Using Negative Words When Describing the Dentist
Whether you have some dental anxiety of your own or feel like it’s a hassle in your jam-packed schedule, it is important to remember that kids are like sponges. Even if you aren’t intentionally using negative words, the overall vibe you are putting off is being absorbed by your child. Therefore, make sure to keep a light, positive energy when talking about the dentist and avoid words like pain, hurt, shot, scary, etc.
Tip #4: Take a Fun Tour of the Office
Immediately placing your child in an unfamiliar environment filled with sharp tools and tooth scraping can cause their anxiety to spike. To make it a more enjoyable experience, ease your child into it by starting with a fun tour of the office. That way, they can meet the team, see the different rooms, and slowly acclimate to the new space. It may seem like a small measure, but your dental team is happy to do whatever it takes to make their patients (regardless of their age) feel comfortable at their visit.
Tip #5: Don’t Send Them to the Dentist on an Empty Stomach
Although it can be tempting to entice your child with their favorite snack or a special meal after their visit, it is important to never send them to a dentist’s appointment on an empty stomach. After all, a rumbling tummy and unfamiliar environment are a recipe for a grumpy, non-compliant child. Therefore, make sure to give them some food beforehand so they are in a good mood during their appointment.
Tip #6: Always Stay in the Room
Even if all the right steps are taken, seeing you leave the room could be the one thing that sends them over the edge. Even if you aren’t holding their hand or sitting in the chair with them, just being there to support them can provide some stress-relief during their appointment.
Being fearful of the dentist is a common phobia; however, it can make getting your child to go their appointment an awful experience. Fortunately, you can use the above six steps to set your little one up for success at their next visit!
About the Practice
From comprehensive treatment options to top-tier customer service, the team at The Dentists of Newtown is focused on one thing: providing you with an exemplary dental experience. With 14 talented doctors on staff and a hand-selected team of friendly professionals, patients can expect compassionate care, detailed explanations, and a genuine focus on making you feel comfortable. If you would like to speak with their team about your child’s next visit or are looking for a dentist in Newtown, don’t hesitate to visit their website or give them a call at 215-579-9900.