Your kid’s comfort with a medical professional isn’t just up to the kind of pediatrician or children’s dentist you go to. It’s primarily up to you, their parents, to get them excited since these visits are all about their health and hygiene! However, many parents and guardians wonder: how do you manage that without resistance and tantrums? Read on for these eight ways to psych them up for exciting dental visits!
Make Dentistry Part of Your Environment
We’re not recommending you start practicing dentistry just so your kids see its importance! We mean introducing them to the idea of it through the home environment. For instance, buy them plush dolls or books about teeth and the importance of oral hygiene.
Tell them stories of what mouths, teeth, and tongues are for so that they understand why they need regular visits with a children’s dentist.
Walk the Talk
Good role modeling enforces positive behavior. Your kids are more observant than you think and are more likely to question oral hygiene when you and your spouse don’t pay much attention to yours.
Since good habits start at home, brush your teeth, floss, and scrape your tongue at least once a day. Your kids are sure to walk in on your oral hygiene routine and see its importance when their parents pay attention to it every single day.
Take them to your dental cleanings, too – even if they don’t have an appointment yet – so they get used to the habit.
Empower Them Through Small Decisions
To further reinforce their agency in oral hygiene, let them choose certain things such as the color of their toothbrush or the kind of toothpaste they want. Give them options, but let the final decision be theirs. Yes, it may cost you a few extra dollars, but giving your kids agency in their oral hygiene now will lead to more affordable dentistry later on.
Use Encouraging Words
Remember that you’re communicating with children. Big, adult-sounding words may cause anxiety since they don’t yet understand what they mean. Instead of terms like dental check-ups or teeth cleaning, tell them a good friend will check their smile.
Listen When They’re Afraid
Your kids may not understand why they must visit a dentist if they clean their mouths religiously. They may also be afraid of overlooking something and think the dentist will reprimand them. Be ready to listen and calm their fears with facts. Sometimes, a listening ear and a reassuring voice are all a child needs to win over worry.
Inform Them about the Visit
This is one instance where you need to treat your kids like adults. Avoid surprising them with a sudden dentist trip, which inspires shock and fear rather than excitement. You’d probably feel the same way, too, if somebody said you had to go to the E.R. out of nowhere.
Instead, let them know about the upcoming visit days in advance and remind them throughout the week to be mentally prepared.
Ensure the Dentist is Kid-Friendly
A children’s dentist must have a fun and exciting environment, not a drab and clinical one like hospitals. You can spot this from the lobby if it has a play area with toys, books, cartoons, and staff that are warm and welcoming to kids.
Do Something Fun Afterward
Rewards like trips to the mall or an afternoon of fun at the park reinforce good behavior. They’ll also make visits to the dentists much more enjoyable after a good cleaning session.
One Last Thing
As a parent, always make sure the dentist you go to isn’t just child-friendly but can also provide services for kids. Adult teeth are very different from a child’s, so they must be experts in pediatric dentistry for your kid’s optimal hygiene. This discernment will save you and your child problems with their teeth later on.
Set your kids’ appointments now with Dental House, MI! We’re a firm that provides affordable dentistry to both grown-ups and children through discounts on our services, which include preventive dentistry, oral surgery, and advanced dental technology across Ann Arbor and Waterford. Contact us today!