Start At A Young Age
Kids should visit the dentist once they have all of their baby teeth. An initial visit or a “chair ride” is typically the child’s first appointment. This appointment is made to introduce the dental atmosphere. A “tell-show-do” approach is used with children to help answer questions and reassure understanding. Following the appointment, your child will have the opportunity to choose a prize from the treasure box!
Answer Questions and Be POSITIVE
Dental anxiety in children is often curiosity and uncertainty. If it is your child’s first dental visit, it is appropriate and encouraged to give a BRIEF description of where you’re going and why. Rather than saying, “are you nervous to go?” you can replace it with, “are you excited to go see the dentist today?” “Don’t use the ‘S’ (shot),’H’ (hurt) or ‘P’ (pain) words with children. Omitting the option of being scared or negative will encourage positive thoughts and perspectives.
Do a ‘Trial Run’
Experiences don’t seem as scary if you’ve already had practice. Substitute playing ‘house’ with playing ‘dentist.’ It will provide the child with some kind of idea of what to expect when they go for the real thing.
Remember that every child is different. You know your child better than anyone, so if there are any special recommendations that you have for your child at the dentist, please inform us prior to their visit and we would be happy to accommodate them ☺