What is it with kids and health? They refuse to eat their greens, they hate getting their annual shots, and they are terrified of the dentist. Kids and health aren’t two things that seem to mix; at least they don’t always mix without tears. If your child is scared of the dentist, you know just how difficult it can be getting them into the chair.

There’s anxiety and stress the day before, which leads to them acting out and misbehaving. On the day of the dreaded appointment, you can almost certainly count on tears, tantrums and a lot of bartering and begging. As a parent, it’s distressing to see your child in such a state, but we have no choice but to make them see the dentist. If we don’t enforce the unwanted visits, the impact would affect their long-term health. If you would love to make your child’s next visit to the dentist a less stressful one, below are some simple tips that you might want to take note of.

 

Lead by example

Often, a child’s dental fear can be directly linked to their parents’ behavior. What this means is that if your child has seen you being anxious or scared about a trip to see the dentist, it may lead to them acting in the same way. Dental fear is a serious problem and one that you don’t want your children to develop as a result of your own actions. Therefore, t’s important to always lead by example . If this means having to go as far as having a dental checkup or treatment with your child in the room to show them that there is nothing to be afraid of, then this is what you should do.

 

Find the right dentist

Many parents make the mistake of not finding a family-friendly dentist for their child. It can be this mistake that leads to a child becoming scared of the dentist. When the environment that they receive their dental care in is a scary, adult atmosphere, children may not feel comfortable. Look for a dental specialist who makes dentistry fun and fear-free for kids. The more fun and exciting their practice is, with toys, games, and colorful decor, the more child-friendly the space will be, and the less frightened your child will be when they are there.

 

Make dentistry fun

A great way that you can take the fear out of your child’s next dental checkup is by making dentistry fun. Invest in a children’s dental playset, so that your child can play dentist for their toys. You could also let them play dentist for you too. There are so many dental toys for kids to choose from, from dentist checkup sets to Playdoh dental sets, so there’s sure to be one of two dental toys that take your child’s fancy.

Dental fear is highly common in adults and children alike, however, it is also completely unnecessary. 50 years ago dentistry might have been painful, but the truth is that isn’t the case today – all dentistry should now be pain-free, regardless of what the procedure being performed is.

Anxiety can go beyond a visit to the dentist. Read my Open Letter to my Son with Anxiety.

Photo Credit: Mojitos and MunchkinsPixabay

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