It is very important that your child receives routine dental care. According to the CDC, more than 40% of kids between the ages of 2 to 11 get cavities. But, despite needing to regularly see a dentist, many children experience some type of anxiety or fear with dental visits. As a parent, it can be hard to force your child to see a dental professional when you know how nervous or scared they are. Here are a few tips to help your child with their dental phobia.
Look For Books or Shows to Help Your Child Overcome Their Fear
One of the ways that you can help your child with a dental phobia get dental care is to find books or shows that talk about going to the dentist. Allowing a child to see their favorite characters visiting a dentist can help them to see that going to a dentist isn’t so bad. It can also be a great way for your child to see what to expect at a dental appointment.
Bring a Comfort Item to the Dentist
Another tip that can help an anxious child when going to the dentist is to bring a comfort item to the dentist. If your child has a special blanket, stuffed animal, or favorite toy, bring that comfort item with them. Having something that comforts them and soothes them may help with their nervousness.
Have Your Child Watch You At the Dentist
When possible, try to schedule an appointment for yourself immediately before your child’s appointment. This allows your child to watch you as the dentist completes an exam and cleaning on you. Seeing exactly what happens and watching you remain calm can help to soothe a nervous or anxious child.
Search For a Dentist That Can Treat Anxious Children
Unfortunately, no matter what you try, some kids simply have dental anxiety, and no home remedies will help. For these children, you may need to find a dental professional who works with anxious children. This may include giving a child anxiety medications or sedatives to help ensure your child can be safely treated without being overly nervous or scared.
If you have a child who is nervous or scared of going to the dentist, our family dentistry can help your child get the dental care they need. Our patient providers can work with the most anxious of children. Call us today to schedule a dental appointment for your child.