Have you started looking after your child’s teeth?

Have you started looking after your child’s teeth?

It’s highly beneficial to start your children early in their dental journey.

This gives the dentist an opportunity to examine your child’s teeth and get an indication of the future development of their teeth, gums, eruption pattern of their teeth in relation to any orthodontic that may be required at a later date? The first visit is crucial in building confidence and trust between the child and the dentist.

What does dental anxiety mean?

We can simply say dental anxiety is the fear of seeking or receiving any dental care. Not liking dental treatment is not the same as being afraid to actually go. Anxiety is brought on by the biochemical changes in our body, our memories, the social situation and our history. Due to the human brain being able to use memory and imagination, we are prone to anxiety that animals aren’t exposed to. Animals can sense danger and so they know fear but humans have the ability to imagine and let past experiences remind them of past fears. This makes us sometimes create our own worst outcomes of situations, throwing us into a whirlpool of fear.

Listening to other people’s bad experiences or witnessing them can also add to our anxieties. Your child might see watch a television program where another kid has a horrible dental experience and convince themselves that a dentist is a place where you experience pain. The anxiety may cause an adult to sweat severely or even have a panic attack, your child may react differently by excessively crying, throwing a tantrum and maybe just flat out refusing to cooperate.

Don’t be nervous

Your children are very aware of the way you feel and react, they can sense when you’re not okay. If the topic arises, try being less serious and tackle it in a light-hearted yet educational manner. Inform them of what the visit entails and how helpful the dentist is. Make sure they know that seeing the dentist will be beneficial for them. If you happen to have a dentist visit and go back home feeling uncomfortable, this won’t help the situation at all. Try putting on a brave face for your little ones and rest accordingly.

Don’t let their first experience be a bad one

Often children’s dental care can be neglected and the child goes to the dentist with teeth that are already damaged. This may make their first experience a bad one because the chances of them arriving with teeth in good shape are slim. They may arrive with cavities and need extensive treatment. This can be avoided if the visits start from an early age and your child learns the importance of good dental hygiene. It also gives the dentist the opportunity to build a relationship with your little one which will put your child’s mind at ease and the dentist rooms become a safe place.

Television can be a bother

As we mentioned before, often tv program isn’t the most help when you’re trying to convince your child about a visit to the dentist. In cartoon programs, dentists are often portrayed as evil men in white coats with huge injection needles only interested in inflicting pain. Even though this is meant in a comical manner, for a child who is unable to comprehend the difference between humour and real life, it can be a bit daunting to watch.

So, what do you need to do?

Visit us as soon as you can, establish your child’s relationship with us early on so they can feel comfortable. Come see us even if it’s just to meet us and visit the practice. This will make your child feel familiar and help them feel comfortable when they come for their first visit. Our practice is family orientated so your child will probably see other little ones and realize that this whole place is maybe not that bad. We look forward to seeing you.

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