Whether or not your child has been to the dentist before, it is likely a bit of a scary ordeal when it’s time for their next visit. It is important to maintain a regular schedule for your child so they can reduce the risk of developing oral health issues, such as cavities and gum disease. Let’s see some tips to prepare your kid for a dental visit.
Tips to Prepare Your Kid for a Dental Visit
If your child is afraid of the dentist, don’t worry. You can take some proactive steps to make sure your child is knowledgeable and aware before arriving at our office. Today, your local dentist near Mission Viejo will share some top tips to prepare your kid for a dental visit the right way.
Step 1: Make Sure At-Home Care is a Routine
It will be a lot less daunting for your child at the dentist if they are already familiar with daily oral maintenance routines. Establishing habits with them can help them take care of themselves so they will need to visit the dentist less. You can start with some small steps, such as introducing a soft toothbrush where they can start practicing brushing their teeth.
Similarly, you can help them understand what contributes to dental decay and cavities. Cut down on their sugar intake and help them clean their gums with a damp cloth to prevent the buildup of plaque.
Step 2: List Out All Expectations
The dentist will take every precaution to be gentle and sweet with your child, and it is a good idea that they know what to expect before even stepping into the office. You can explain to your loved one that you will likely have X-rays taken, which includes holding a small item in the mouth while pictures are taken.
As soon as your child’s first tooth starts to grow, it is a good time to schedule their first dental health appointment. In addition to a full checkup, the dentist may also clean the teeth using a brush and a scaler, polishing them off with a flavorful paste. The dentist will also show your child how to properly brush and floss their teeth for continued at-home success!
Step 3: Reward Your Child After Their Visit
If your child is having trouble adjusting to the idea of visiting the dentist or you just want to reward them for being on their best behavior during the appointment, you should establish a reward system so they have something to look forward to. Whether this includes a bag of goodies, a trip to the park, or a post-dental visit party, you can get creative and reward your child with something they will love! Not only is it good to reward them for a job well done, but it also helps to establish a positive association with going to the dentist.
Schedule Consecutive Visits with Your Child Today
Once your child has gotten their first visit out of the way, following appointments should be a lot easier for them. They will know what to expect and can even meet with the same exact dental team every time they come by. The dentist will likely recommend a cadence of every six months for a checkup and cleaning, encouraging lots of routine at-home care in the meantime.
If your child is still feeling afraid of the dentist, you can reassure them that there are not likely to be any shots or needles involved. Plus, there are a variety of fun tools and equipment to learn about, which can help encourage the support of dental health. Going to the dentist is cool, and we can prove it! Visit our office of pediatric dentistry near you today to learn more!