Tips to Prepare Kids for Their First Dental Visit
Tips that help you help your child understand the importance of dental hygiene!
By teaching your kids about the importance of oral health and hygiene from a young age, you’ll set them up for a lifetime of success and good health. Preparing a child for their first dental office visit is critical for setting a good tone. Now Dental is a child-friendly dentist, but a lot of how a visit to the dentist is received by a child depends on parental preparation!
Your Child’s First Dental Appointment
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that your child makes their first trip to the dentist no later than their first birthday. This not only sets up healthy habits for life, but it also ensures that a professional is keeping an eye on your child’s oral health. While it may not seem like those incoming baby teeth are a big deal, there are situations which may call for earlier intervention by a dentist!
Cultivate A Positive Attidue In Your Child Towards Dental Care
One of the biggest factors in whether or not your child has a positive experience with the dentist depends on your own attitude and example. If you act anxious, express negative feelings towards dental visits, or let your child see your own fears about the visit, it may cause your child to feel more afraid of the process. Instead, if you can bring a positive attitude and chat about the dentist in a positive light, you’ll set the tone that a visit to the dentist is a good thing.
For young kids, having too much time to think about a new, unknown experience can lead to stress, so don’t tell your kids about their upcoming dental visits until the day of the appointment. This will prevent unnecessary worrying on their part. The morning of the visit, tell them they’re going to have a fun visit with the nice tooth doctor, and answer their questions without going into too much detail.
Videos, Games, and Books
For many kids, being a little more prepared for the experience can help to set expectations and remove fear of the unknown. Age-appropriate books, YouTube videos, and games can help familiarize them with the dental setting. Playing “dentist” with your child is an excellent way to get started. Have them recline in a chair, count their teeth, brush their teeth, and talk about the importance of taking care of their teeth. Then, switch roles, allowing them to play the dentist.
Scheduling a dentist appointment during naptime or mealtime is setting your child up for failure. Instead, be smart with your scheduling, choosing a time of day when your child is most likely to be content and in a good mood.
No matter if your dental visit goes off without a hitch or if your child struggles with the process, take some time after the appointment to focus on what went well. The more you reinforce the positive aspects, the more your child will focus on those good parts.
Choose the Right Dentist
Of course, choosing the right dentist for your family makes all the difference in your kids’ experience. Tips to prepare kids for their first dental visit are just guidelines that can help your child tolerate time at the dentist’s office. To set up an appointment for your child for family dental care near Carmichael, CA, reach out to the pros at Now Dental today!