There are a number of ways that you can help manage your child's behaviour and ease your child's fears around visiting the dentist. Here are a few tips from our children’s dentists about what to do before, during and after your child's dental appointments.
It’s perfectly normal for your child to have fears about going to the dentist. For both children and adults, dental anxiety is a common condition.
It’s important to overcome these fears, and find ways to manage behaviours around visiting the dentist, because oral health is critically important for keeping your child's smile healthy.
Selecting a dentist who understands dental anxiety and is willing to work with both you and your child to ease their fears will help make the process more enjoyable for everyone.
Here are some things you can do to help manage your child's behaviour before, during and after their dental appointments.
Before The Visit
Let your child know in advance that they have a dentist appointment. It's best not to spring it on them at the last minute. Knowing ahead of time will give your child an opportunity to mentally prepare for the appointment, and for you to talk about their concerns before you get there.
During The Visit
It's a good idea to bring along a favourite toy or book so that your child has something familiar and comforting with them while you’re at the dental office. Familiar items can be a helpful and calming distraction for your child during their visit to the dentist.
Keep calm. Although it can be difficult to stay calm while your child is having a hard time, speaking gently to your child will make them feel safer and at ease.
After The Visit
Be sure to praise your child for attending their dental appointment. Applauding them for their bravery and good behaviour during a dental visit can make a world of difference, and set them up for success for future dental appointments.