Going to the dentist can be scary for a child, especially if it’s their first time. In this post, we’re giving you some tips and tricks to help you prepare your child for their (first) dentist appointment.
Regardless of your own feelings, try your best to talk about the dentist in a positive light. Remind your child that like their doctor, a dentist’s job is to help them be healthy.
Let them know what to expect
Going to a new dentist, or visiting after a long time, can be scary. Let your child know what they can expect from the appointment. When your child is in the chair, the dentist will look in their mouth to examine existing teeth and your child’s bite, as well as any potential issues with their gums or jaw. It’s possible that the dentist will clean their teeth, too, and discuss good oral hygiene practices and other habis like thumb sucking or nail biting.
Bring them to your appointment
A great way to show your child what to expect is to take them along to your own appointments. This gives them the opportunity to get familiar with the office, staff, and meet a dentist!
Help them feel comfortable
Whether it’s on the car ride to the appointment, in the waiting room, or in the appointment itself, make sure you have something that helps your child feel comfortable. Play their favourite music in the car on the way to the appointment. Make sure they have a stuffed animal, blankie, or book that they love to help them feel better about being in an uncomfortable situation.
Schedule it early
As most parents know, your child’s routine can be hectic. From daycare and nap time, to play dates and other things (like swim lessons), the day can get away from you quickly. Plus, all that activity can make your child quite tired. And we all know the more tired the child, the more likely they are to be grumpy! Try to schedule your child’s dentist appointment in the morning to overcome any busy day grumpiness that may ensue.