Taking your kids to the dentist is an essential part of life. It teaches them at a young age to keep their teeth healthy and promote excellent oral hygiene habits. But from a child’s perspective, a trip to the dentist can be very terrifying. The earlier a child visits the dentist, the better. They have to get used to lying on a chair in an unfamiliar room filled with unfamiliar noises and objects, all while a complete stranger is poking unusual instruments in their mouth.
When preparing for a visit, especially the first time, try not to include too many specifics. Doing so will only raise more questions, and adding more information about an extra treatment like a filling may only cause more anxiety. Keep a positive attitude when discussing an upcoming visit, but don’t give your child false hope. It will only make the situation worse.
It is very common for a young adolescent to cry, whine, squirm, and not want to be examined by a dentist. Stay calm and remember that the dentist and staff members are used to working with children and have seen their share of tantrums. Dental care specialists do not advise promising your child a special treat if they behave well at the dentist.
Teach your child that visiting the dentist is a must, not a choice, and that the dentist will take care of their teeth. You might also explain that keeping their mouth healthy is an essential piece of their overall health and that the dentist will provide them a beautiful smile for years to come.