Managing the anxiety of going to the dentist
Some children have no problems going to the dentist, from the first time they like to visit this specialist. But there are others who suffer from anxiety when visiting the pediatric dentist. The fear of the dentist of children is a reality. The World Health Organization reports that 15% of the population suffers from odontophobia, fear of this specialist. This happens despite the fact that every time professionals and teams are more patient friendly. Children’s dental health is very important. Usually the first visit to the dentist is made a year or when the first teeth sprout, but many parents feel anguish to take their children and transfer these fears to them.
When they are so small it is normal for them to cry or feel some apprehension towards the dentist. But it is necessary to make this process more bearable so that in the future, when they visit the dentist, they will not have any problems or traumas.
Forcing the child to sit on the chair, stress it or scare it with the dentist will bring problems in the future. The pediatric dentists are experts handling the children, they can help you make the visit more bearable.
Manage odontophobia in children
- Read them a book with a theme about teeth. There are very nice options in the market, with colors, friendly language and a happy dental experience.
- Start visits to the dentist from an early age. We already mentioned that it must be when the first tooth appears or at the latest at one year. This, apart from being the healthiest recommendation, is the best for the child to become familiar with the pediatric dentist. This way you will feel comfortable and trust this professional.
- Play the dentist at home. Before taking your child to the dentist’s visit, play the dentist and patient. In this role-playing game he pretends to be the professional and he or she the patient, and vice versa. They could also do it with toys.
- Explain everything to the child, but with simple words. Talk to your child about his appointment, prepare it with time and remind him when the date for it approaches. This is ideal when they are older, to be told if they have any questions. Use phrases such as: “they will check your smile”, “health”, “cleaning” among others.
- Teach by example. For your children to have good oral health, you as a parent must be the example. Do the hygiene routine with them.