Dental anxiety is common among children, and it can prevent them from going to the dentist. It can also lead to a dental phobia, a chronic fear of going to the dentist. As a parent, you can reduce your child's dental anxiety by practicing good oral hygiene yourself and being positive about the dentist. You can also take your child to the dentist at a young age, so your child can see that the dentist isn't a scary place.
Start Dental Visits While They're Young
The earlier you start your child's dental care, the better! It sets the stage for a lifetime of healthy smiles. Plus, it gives them an opportunity to learn good oral hygiene habits from you at a young age.
After their first tooth erupts, bring them into the office for a first checkup and cleaning. Then continue to bring them in every six months for routine cleanings and checkups. Children's teeth are more susceptible to decay than adult teeth, so regular visits to the dentist can help eliminate any potential problems.
You may also want to incorporate a trip to our office into your own checkups. This is a great way for your child to see that you are practicing great oral health care as well.
Take a Comforting Item to the Dentist's Appointment
If your kid is anxious about their visit to the dentist, you may want to bring along something that can comfort them throughout the visit. It may be their favorite stuffed animal or blanket, a snack they like to eat, or even a book to read to them while they are in the waiting room. Whatever it is, this will help them to feel more relaxed while in the dental chair. Make sure the doctor approves the toy so as not to interfere with any instruments during a procedure.
Educate Your Child About Good Dental Care
Talk to your children about their oral health so they understand why it is important to go to the dentist regularly. Be sure to stress the importance of visiting the dentist so they can have a healthy smile for years to come. Reading a story or playing a game with your child that involves dentists can be a great way to start conversations about dental care. If you have any questions, ask your dentist at your next appointment.
Lead By Example
Always lead by example when it comes to great oral health. Your child will watch what you do and take notice of when they should brush their teeth twice a day and when they should floss after meals and snacks. Show them how you care for your own teeth and encourage them to do the same. Praise good behaviors and efforts for ensuring your child is on the right track to good oral health!
Read Stories Or Play Games Involving Dentist Visits
When children see their parents taking care of their oral health with regular brushing and flossing and seeing the dentist for regular cleanings and checkups, they're more likely to do the same themselves. This is a simple yet effective way to set your child on the right path toward great oral health care!
To learn more, visit Northeast Dental Associates at 19411 McKay Dr #150, Humble, TX 77338, or call (832) 818-8132 to schedule an appointment.