According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, children should receive their first dental visit no later than their first birthday.
Dentists may ensure that their dental growth is on track by scheduling early appointments. Taking children to the dentist at an early age allows them to become acquainted with and form a rapport with their dentist.
We understand that the first visit is thrilling, but it can also be frightening at times. Preparing for your child’s first dentist visit is critical to establishing a positive first impression.
That’s why we’ve put together a checklist of things you can do to alleviate your concerns and guarantee your child has a positive first visit.
According to studies, children tend to emulate adult behavior. They are alert and sensitive to their surroundings. So, even if you dislike going to the dentist, don’t show it to your child. Remember to always speak positively about the dentist and to avoid using any bad remarks.
Avoid using comments like “don’t be afraid” or “it won’t hurt,” as these can have a negative impact and induce first-time visit anxiety.
Additionally, utilizing simple terms can be really beneficial. Instead of using heavy phrases like “x-rays” or “machines,” try “healthy teeth” or “fun chair.” This allows you to use phrases that your child is already familiar with, which might reassure them about what is going to happen.
Visit the Dentist’s Office
Another excellent technique to demonstrate what will occur is to take them on a tour of the office before the initial visit. This visit allows them to become acquainted with the office’s sights and sounds. This also allows kids to get to know the staff and play in the waiting room, allowing them to have fun while visiting.
Make an Appointment
It is critical to schedule the appointment wisely. We recommend scheduling the appointment during a time when they are usually in a good mood.
This could be following a snooze or a meal. When children are hungry or fatigued, they are less likely to cooperate, which can jeopardize their appointment.
Every child has a favorite character they enjoy watching or reading about! This is an excellent resource for assisting your child in preparing for a visit to the dentist. Find anything that incorporates their favorite character going to the dentist or brushing their teeth. Seeing their favorite figure engaged can make kids become more thrilled for their initial visit.
At home, pretend to be a dentist.
Practice is the best method to prepare for something! This is why pretending to be a dentist at home before going to the dentist can be so beneficial.
Make use of your child’s toothbrush and have them sit in a chair. You can pretend to wash and count their teeth while teaching the importance of oral hygiene.
Then you’ll be able to transfer roles! Allow them to play the dentist and their favorite stuffed animal to play the patient. This will allow your youngster to be fully immersed in the event.
Items of Solace
Is there a beloved toy or stuffed animal in your child’s collection? Then take it with you! Having their furry pals accompany them during this new experience can help them stay calm and feel at ease. Remember to always have a backup friend in case one isn’t enough!
Provide a little incentive that will pique their interest! It could be ice cream, a trip to the playground, or a new toy. Promising a reward for a well-behaved and successful visit will motivate them to be on their best behavior. They will be more likely to remain calm and attentive if they know they will be rewarded at the end.
You can help your child feel secure and happy about their first dentist visit by utilizing these strategies to prepare them. At West U Smiles we specialize in treating all kids with exceptional dental care. Book your child’s appointment today and we promise to make it amazing!