You’ve heard the horror stories of kids crying and fighting when they have to go to the dentist, but is there a way to make it better? Yes! Here are some ways that you can make your kids love going back to the dentist.
Set a good example by going to the dentist yourself
“Too often, we let our children do things that we know are bad for them. We give in to their tantrums and take them to the dentist when they’re due for a cleaning. Why? To avoid the hassle of struggling with our kids at every turn.” It’s important to set a good example by going to the dentist yourself and showing your children how adults handle their health. It’s also an opportunity for you as an adult to get some preventive dental care such as cleanings and x-rays so you can keep your teeth healthy too!
Talk to your children about what happens during a dental appointment
In a calm, quiet space, talk to your child and explain why they need to go. Set up an appointment that fits your family’s schedule and takes them out of school. Let them know that going to the dentist is important because their teeth are important! Explain that the dentist will be examining their teeth and keeping them healthy. Calmly talk to your child about the tools that they will use and what will be happening.
Plan ahead for a positive experience
Helping your child relax will help them have a more positive and comfortable dental appointment. Here are some ways that you can make planning ahead easier:
Pick clothing that won’t be uncomfortable while you are sitting in the waiting room
Plan where your child will sit beforehand and what toys they will play with or books they will read during their appointment. If possible, plan these things with your child ahead of time so they can get excited about them. Having this information prepared for yourself and taking steps to prepare your kids for a positive experience at the dentist makes all the difference when it comes down to getting through an appointment without tears!
Bring toys, books, magazines, or an iPad to entertain your kids during their wait.
Take any medicines that they may need with you. Bring snacks if your child is hungry. If possible give them a snack before getting into the car and remind them to chew with their mouth closed! Bring water in a sippy cup or a bottle that can be used if they are thirsty. Make sure you know where the bathroom is located ahead of time. Pack extra outfits for them to wear if they spill something on themselves.
In fact, keep all these items packed up and in your car at all times so you can pull them out when you need them. If you live far away or don’t have time to plan ahead, try livening up the trip and making it a mini-vacation for your child. Bring lots of snacks and toys, along with a special stuffed animal, toy, or blanket that they can hold onto while they are waiting or sitting in the dentist chair. Try taking them outside to run around before going inside so they burn off some energy and aren’t too tired when it’s time for their appointment. Simply making them laugh will help ease any fears that may arise during an appointment. If possible ask if someone can take a few pictures or videos of your child during their visit so that you can print them out and look at them after the appointment.
It’s okay to initiate a conversation about the dentist and why they are making an appointment instead of letting your child bring up any questions he/she may have, but answer any question honestly and calmly! You want them prepared with as much information as possible because this will help to get rid of fear surrounding the dentist’s office. Ask if there is anything else that they are worried about.
Arrive early to your appointment and have everything ready
This means having all of your kid’s toys and treats in hand. You also want to make sure that you know how long you will be waiting and plan ahead for bathroom breaks! Sometimes kids pick up on our stress so make sure you are calm when arriving at the dental office. This will help keep everyone relaxed! You can even tell them to get their books out while waiting so it seems like less of an inconvenience
Give yourself plenty of time before your appointment because playgrounds are distracting for children, especially if they don enjoy waiting. It is also less stressful for everyone if you arrive early so that your kids can get settled and comfortable before their appointment.
Talk to your children before and after the appointment, being as level-headed as possible. Explain to them what happened during their first dental visit and how it helped make them healthy. If they bring it up again in a calm moment, tell them how good they did.
Be a positive role model for your child and make the dentist a fun place to go! Give your children rewards if they keep their appointments, or get something special after as well. Explain that when you go to the dentist, you’re doing it so that you can have healthy teeth and so that one day they will grow up to take care of their own teeth too! If there are any questions on how you should be handling things with your child’s dental appointment. If we cannot offer assistance directly, we will be glad to help connect you with another practice that can best serve your needs. Good luck!
Find a dentist that is kid-friendly
There are many dentists in Guelph and surrounding areas that have child-friendly waiting rooms and staff. From toys to TV, a kid-friendly dentist makes going to the dentist fun! Take your kids to visit a dentist and pick one that they like.
It’s important to determine what kind of dentist you want for your children too. Some dental offices offer preventative care only, while others do full restorative work. You’ll need to find out if the dentist is there for the health of your child, or can help fix malformed teeth or permanent cosmetic issues. A lot of dentists offer a combination of both kinds of treatments too! Find out beforehand so you’re not caught by surprise.
Get them involved in making their own decisions about their oral hygiene
Your child may be resistant to going into a first appointment with the dentist, but it helps them understand why they have certain checkups and appointments when they are involved. Adhering to their dentist appointments is very important for your child’s future dental health as well. Get them involved in picking out the colors of their toothbrush or floss, and having a say in what kind of toothpaste they use! Whether it’s a bubble gum flavored paste or something minty fresh, your children will be more likely to brush if they feel like they have ownership over their oral hygiene.
Set up a regularly scheduled appointment time for your child
It’s important to take your kids to the dentist on a regular basis. The more often they go, the better it is at keeping their teeth healthy and cavity-free. Make sure you call ahead of time though! Find out if the dentist you selected has any specials that may apply to new patients or children. Ask about deals or discounts that can help reduce costs for your family as well. If there are any questions on how you should be handling things with your child’s dental appointment. If we cannot offer assistance directly, we will be glad to help connect you with another practice that can best serve your needs. Good luck!
When taking your children in for their first visit to the dentist, you will need to know that few things are more important than taking your children to a pediatric or family dentist. Dentists who work with adults normally do not have a lot of experience working with children and are not as skilled in making dental visits fun for them.
Give praise whenever possible!
The key is teaching children that there’s no need to fear the dentist. Praise them as often as you can when they go back without complaining and reward them with fun prizes when they continue to go even if they’re not afraid of visiting their dental clinic.
The dentist is going to be an important part of your child’s health care as they grow up. Encourage them by giving them the proper tools, guidance, and information so that one day, when they are older adults, their dental health will be better for it! Thank you for reading our article on how to help your children have a good dental experience if you have any questions please contact us we would love to hear from you
Does my child need braces?
When it comes time for some kids to think about cosmetic dentistry, many parents wonder if their kids will need orthodontic treatment. They may be wondering if their child’s teeth could be straightened out and look better via traditional braces. The truth is that there is a wide range of factors to consider before this kind of decision can be made by any dentist. Factors such as what your child is like, how your child feels about things, and the seriousness of any issues can all affect whether or not braces are right for a particular patient.
If your child is impatient and hates wearing traditional braces, having their teeth fixed may be a bad decision because they likely will never wear them as prescribed by their dentist. If you have concerns about this kind of thing, try to find out what kinds of patients the dental office treats regularly. A good orthodontic practice will focus on kids who need help with getting their teeth straightened out so that serious problems do not arise later in life.