How to Prepare Your Child for the Dentist
One of the best ways to make sure your child has a healthy smile for life is by establishing a dental home. That means creating a trusting relationship between your child & your family dentist & making sure visits to the dentist are fun & educational. As a parent or guardian, you can play a large part in making sure your child is happy & comfortable at the dentist. Here are a few ways how:
Take Your Child to Your Dental Appointments
If you are a new parent or the parent of a small child, talk to us about bringing your child along on your own teeth cleaning appointment. You can hold your child on your lap while we clean your teeth. We are a family dentist & welcome the opportunity to introduce your child to the world of dental care. Together, you, the dental hygienist & dentist will explain to your child what’s going on, so that the process of going to the dentist becomes familiar to the child before he or she starts going to his or her own dental appointments. Many children become anxious when presented with situations that are unfamiliar. Seeing you get your teeth cleaned will introduce the concept to the child so they are less likely to be afraid or upset when it’s their turn to see the dentist.
Read a Picture Book
Another great way to introduce children to the idea of visiting the family dentist is to read them a picture book about the topic. There are many great children’s books about visiting the dentist, so you can choose one that you think will appeal to your child. You and your child can re-read the book whenever they have a dental appointment coming up to remind them why going to the dentist is important & that it isn’t scary.
Here are a few great children’s books about the dentist:
Just Going to the Dentist (Little Critter) by Mercer Mayer
ABC Dentist: Healthy Teeth from A to Z by Harriet Ziefert
Curious George Visits the Dentist by H. A. Rey
Cartoons & Children’s Shows
Many children’s programs have episodes that focus on trips to the family dentist. They usually address possible fears children might have within a story that the child can relate to. A good place to search for episodes of kids’ shows that feature a trip to the dentist is YouTube, or similar video-streaming services. You can also keep an eye out for dentist-themed episodes on TV make sure you & your child watch them together.
Here are a few episodes of children’s shows featuring the dentist that are currently available to watch online:
Dudley Visits the Dentist
Dentist Video from Sesame Street
As a family dentist, we are alway happy to do whatever it takes to make sure your little one feels comfortable & welcome at our practice. If you have any concerns or questions about your child’s visits to the dentist, please don’t hesitate to ask us.