In many cases, adults and kids are scared of the dentist, and are filled with dread and anxiety when they know they have a dental appointment to attend. However, it is important that this fear does not deter your child from regularly visiting the dentist, as check-ups are essential for healthy teeth and gums.
Statistics in the UK have shown that around 80 percent of kids in the UK did not attend a dentist before their second birthday, when in reality, they should visit the dentist as soon as their teeth start to appear. So, it is important that you do not let the fear of the dentist get in the way of their dental hygiene. Here are some ways that you can prepare your child for their first dental visit.
Get an Appointment ASAP
We recommend that you get your child booked in for their first dental appointment as soon as possible, as the longer you put it off, and the older they get, the more scared they will be. Early appointments are the key to your child’s dental health and to ensure that their teeth are developing correctly.
Getting an appointment while your child is still young also offers them the opportunity to get comfortable with the dentist and become familiar with the process. This can make future appointments more straightforward for both you, your child, and the dentist.
Find the Right Dentist
It is important that you find the right dentist for your child’s first dental visit and look around in your local area for a practice that is good with children. You should look for a dentist that has all the necessary qualifications and experience for a child’s dental appointment, and also be sure that they are patient with your child and can ease any anxiety or nerves they have.
When picking the right dentist for your child, it is crucial that you find a practice that offers a welcoming environment with a relaxed feel to it, so your child can feel as comfortable as possible, such as the Love Teeth Dental Practice. They use state of the art equipment to make the treatment as quick and painless as possible, as well as minimally invasive techniques to ensure a gentle and high-quality experience, which is perfect for your child.
Choose the Best Time for an Appointment
The time that you book the appointment for can have a huge impact on how well the treatment goes and how relaxed and comfortable your child feels. So, you should book the appointment for a time of the day that your child feels happiest. For example, if your child is not great in the mornings, then we would recommend that you avoid early morning appointments at all costs.
The more attentive and engaged your child is during the appointment, the easier the appointment will be for everyone. So, you may want to avoid late evening appointments for your child as they are more likely to feel tired and less co-operative. Additionally, the later in the day the appointment, the more time your child has to feel anxious and worried about it.
Book Your Appointment at the Same Time
If possible, you should try and book your own dental appointment at the same time as your child’s so that you go through the experience together. Your child will likely feel more relaxed and co-operate better if they see you and their siblings also having their dental check-up.
Going as a family for your appointment also makes sure that you all get the important dental treatment you need, and you can all support each other through the experience.
Bring Their Favourite Cuddly Toy
All children have a favourite cuddly toy, so we recommend that you bring this along with you to your child’s first dental appointment. Not only will they help them feel more comfortable and relaxed, but you can also show your child what their treatment will involve by demonstrating it on their cuddly toy. This can help them be more aware of what will happen in their appointment, so they do not suffer any nasty surprises.
Be Patient with Them
If your child is nervous and upset when it comes to having their first dental appointment, then you may find it frustrating. But it is crucial that you remain patient with them no matter what and help them through the treatment. Regularly attending the dentist is something that your child is going to have to get used to, and the more annoyed you get at them, the worse the experience will be for them, and the more they will dread it in the future.
Many parents dread taking their children to the dentist for the first time, but by making these preparations, you can make sure that the experience is as straightforward and calm as possible for your child.