Children are often subjected to various irrational fears – from monsters under the bed or inside the closet to creepy creatures sneaking inside a dark room. It can be quite laughable to hear their fears given that they are more imaginative than adults. One of the most fearsome activities of children is having dental bridges treatment and visiting the dentist.
Apparently, pop culture greatly affects how children see dentists as scary individuals. Oftentimes, dentists are portrayed in cartoons shows or comics as villains or heinous people with their needles and scary-looking apparatus. In some cases, visiting the dentist is done in a comical way by recording painful reactions of people after getting their teeth pulled off.
Unpleasant exposure about dentists often leads children to develop a fear of them. As a parent, however, you can enlighten them about who dentists really are and what they do so that they will feel more comfortable and at ease.
Here are some ways on how to ease your child’s dental anxiety:
Explain About Dental Work and What to Expect
It is important to tell your child that he will be visiting the dentist and what it will be like. Telling your child the basic information about dental work can make him calmer and more complacent in the dental office.
Discuss Good Oral Hygiene
Children are less conscious about proper hygiene, and they tend to care less about check-ups, but they do understand noticeable aftermaths. Telling them that they will have stronger teeth and more beautiful smile after visiting the dentist would surely make it easier for them to comprehend the importance of a dental visit.
If they still don’t find the advantages amusing enough for them to visit the dentist, you can always explain to them the poor outcome of not having their teeth checked.
Don’t Bribe Them with Rewards
Visiting the dentist is mandatory and giving children a reward for good behavior at the dentist may actually instigate a negative experience on them, therefore, increasing their anxiety.
Instead of rewarding them with sweets, food, or toys, you can verbally praise them for visiting the dentist. That way, children would be excited to visit the dentist again.
Focus on Your Child
Even as an adult, you get to feel anxiety whenever you visit the dentist. However, you must not express your fear to your children and instead, focus on them alone.
Giving them your focus will increase their confidence the moment they step in the dental clinic. Moreover, this would even encourage them to start visiting the dentist as needed.
Children are highly enthusiastic when it comes to games or any activity that would keep them entertained. You might as well take advantage of this by playing a dental visit with your little one.
You can act as a dentist by setting up a dental clinic, show your child how his teeth look like and encourage him to brush his teeth. Setting up this kind of scenario would give children an idea as to how dental visits work.
In conclusion, children are more prone to irrational anxieties than adults. As a parent, it is your task to ensure that your child won’t experience what he normally sees on television or in comics whenever he goes to the dentist.