It seems like children are born with a fear of the dentist. They express fear and anxiety before their first dental visit. However, childrens dentistry is very important to a lifelong of good dental health. How can we overcome the fear of dentists for our children? How can we introduce them to important pediatric dental services? How can we instill good dental health into their daily hygiene practices?
Bring them to your dental visits
It is possible that much of our children?s dentist fears come from our own fears of the dentist. Good dental practices start at home. If you relay the importance of regular dental care, they are likely to follow. Bring young children to your dental visits, if possible. This allows them to normalize it, before they even grow their own teeth that require pediatric dental services. Allow them to sit in the chair and to interact with the dentist. They may even be excited when their turn comes.
Make dental care a routine
It may be difficult to get children into bed at night. However, creating a nightly routine can be helpful. Allow them to watch TV or read until a specific time, and then send them to the bathroom to wash their face and brush their teeth. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that nearly one out of every five U.S. children has untreated cavities. The rate is 19.5% for kids between ages 2 and 5 and 22.9% in youngsters between 6 and 19. Creating a dental care routine can help them prevent the cavities.
Choose a pediatric dentist
Dentists who do not specialize in young children may have the dental knowledge to work with your child, but it is unlikely that they will be comfortable with them. If you choose a pediatric dentist who specializes in pediatric dental services, they will have additional experience in comforting your child.
Their dental offices and waiting rooms are also more likely to be catered to the young child, making the dentist?s office an entertaining place to visit. Friendly dental care for your children is necessary in turning the scary dentist into an exciting and interesting place to visit.
Practice good dental protection
Good dental care includes more than regular brushing, flossing, and dental checkups. It also requires regular protection of the teeth and mouth. Life would seem awfully dull in many communities without the presence of children?s team sports. Yet, as many as 39% of dental injuries occur while kids are playing sports, according to Colgate. Helmets and mouth guards are two forms of protection. If an accident does occur, the most important thing to do is get to a dentist as fast as possible.
Educate your child
Children may be hesitant to practice good dental routines, because they simply do not understand why they have to. Educate your child on the importance of a beautiful smile and inform them how regular dental care achieves that. Provide them with fun coloring books and picture books about good dental care. Allow them to interact with your dentist and inquire about the different tools used and why they are beneficial. The more interest that you can grow in your child, the more likely they are going to be to continue good dental practices. It can also be helpful to inform your child on healthy foods to eat for better teeth.
Too many children are affected by poor dental health. Some children are so afraid of the dentist, before they ever even set foot into a dental office. Pediatric dental services are important in both a child?s dental health and in establishing a pattern of lifelong dental habits. A parent can reduce the anxiety of the dentist for a child by bringing them to their dental visits, educating them on the importance of a healthy smile, taking them to a specialized pediatric dentist, and protecting their teeth during active sporting events. The steps that you take now will shape your child?s dental practices for the rest of their lives.