What to do if your Child is Scared of the Dentist

what to do if child is scared of the dentist

what to do if child is scared of the dentistServing patients of Erwin, Jonesborough, and Greeneville TN

Children and adults alike can harbor fears of going to the dentist. The reasons vary for each person, whether it is fear from the unknown, a negative past experience, or hearing someone talk about their treatment, fear, or generalized anxiety over dental visits. Forcing your child to deal with the traumatizing experience could affect their oral health care for the rest of their life. Therefore, your family dentists in Greeneville, Tusculum Dental Care, are sharing some tips on what to do if your child is scared of going to the dentist.

Ways to Help Your Child Reduce Dental Fear and Anxiety

Dental anxiety could cause problems well into adulthood. From the sound of the drill to the painful sensations, dental anxiety is a real condition that should be addressed in childhood to promote positive oral health throughout adulthood. Your friendly dentists in Greeneville at Tusculum Dental Care have developed a few tips below that should help you work through dental anxiety with your child.

  1. Read children’s books about dental care

Your child could begin to understand the dental visit process and what to expect during the appointment through books. With the use of colorful illustrations, age-appropriate language, and happy dental experiences, your Jonesborough family dentist, Tusculum Dental Care, recommends books as an excellent way to reduce fear and anxiety about the dentist.

  1. Watch educational programming about children’s dental visits

Many channels offer shows that are geared toward children and visiting the dentist. The shows not only teach what to expect at the dentist but also help children understand the importance of regularly brushing and flossing their teeth. Your friendly family dentist in Erwin, Tusculum Dental Care, recommends asking the library for children’s programs on DVD that talk about dentistry.

  1. Start dental visits early

A common question parents ask is when should they begin bringing their child to the dentist. Your family-friendly Greeneville dentist, Tusculum Dental Care, advises parents to start dental treatment after the first tooth has emerged or before the child’s first birthday. The timing of the appointment is critical, not only for the oral health of the child but to help them become comfortable with the dentist and dental office. With routine dental checkups and cleanings, you and your child should build trust with your provider.

  1. Play the dentist at home

Playtime is a great time to introduce dentistry and oral health care to your child. Pretending to be the dentist and checking mommy and daddy’s teeth could help your child become comfortable with what a dentist does during the appointment. Once the child has explored the role of a dentist, reverse the characters, so the child is the patient, and you can demonstrate the different activities that occur during a dental appointment. Then, you could encourage your child to brush the teeth of their stuffed animals or dolls for practice. The more exposure a child has to dentistry in a comfortable environment before visiting the dentist, the more relaxed they should be during their visit to your friendly Jonesboro dentist, Tusculum Dental Care.

  1. Communicate with your child

As soon as you schedule the appointment, tell your child. Open communication about the upcoming dental appointment allows your child to begin mentally processing the event ahead of time. Continuously reminding them as the date approaches can help your child mentally prepare by providing plenty of time for them to ask questions. Keep your answers simple, yet understandable while using positive words such as “healthy,” “clean,” or “strong.” Your Erwin family dentist, Tusculum Dental Care, advises avoiding the common phrase “everything will be fine.” Using the words with a child who needs advanced dental care could cause mistrust between you and your child and your child and the dentist making treatment more difficult. So, use positive, empowering phrases when answering questions and speaking with your child about the dentist.

Family Dentists in Greeneville, Jonesborough, and Erwin, TN

Children have particular circumstances surrounding their oral health care, and a family dentist must be employed to address your child’s dental needs. From regular experience in working with children to specialized training for their changing oral needs, your family dentists in Greeneville, Tusculum Dental Care is focused on providing the best care for your child. Call us today at (423) 639-7575 or visit us online to schedule an appointment today.