Our Approach To Pediatric Dentistry
For some children, a visit to a dentist can be a scary experience. The tools make loud noises, it can be uncomfortable, and sometimes we have to do painful procedures. The team at Stout Dentistry in Charlotte is here to help ensure your child has a positive experience at every visit. Making sure your child feels comfortable while receiving dental care is crucial in order to maintain healthy teeth and gums. If you have a child who is afraid of the dentist, the methods listed below may help prepare your child for their next dental treatment and assuage any dental fear they may express.
Start Pediatric Dentistry Visits Early
Children should visit the dentist for the first time as soon as their first tooth arrives or they celebrate their first birthday, whichever comes first. Routine trips to the dentist starting from a young age will help them get used to the procedure and foster a relationship with the dentist to build that crucial trust for long term oral health.
Describe the Dental Visit, but Keep it Simple
It’s important that your child understands what their visit to the dentist will look like prior to going in for real, however, it is equally important, perhaps even more so, that parents describe the visit within reason. This means avoiding words like “pain” and “shot” or any other unpleasant terms. Instead, give us a call to ask what terms we use for certain words. As an example, cavities might become “sugar bugs” or sedatives “sleepy juice.” These words sound more fun and less threatening to children.
Practice a Dental Visit at Home
Kids love role playing games and imitating a trip to our East Charlotte dentist’s office is a great way to help your child understand what might go on during their actual visit. A child’s fear is based on the unknown, so going through a few practice visit at home will make the real life appointment seem like a piece of cake. Allow them to play the patient while you play the dentist. Ask them to sit in the chair while you brush and floss their teeth, ask them to open wide, an use a flashlight to look around in their mouths. Then switch roles and let them play dentist on you. Or, if you have a fear of child dentistry, let them practice with their stuff animals!
Read a Book
There are heaps of children’s books available all about going to the dentist. Fun, colorful books outline what happens during a dental visit. If they see their favorite characters like Curious George and Spongebob Squarepants getting their teeth cleaned as no big deal, then your child will see that there is no reason to fear the dentist. Instead, a visit to the dentist becomes an exciting event filled with all sorts of shenanigans.
Act as a Good Role Model at Home
Children learn behaviors from watching their parents at home. If they see that mom and dad brush and floss their teeth twice daily, then they will want to do the same. Further, parents are especially prone to passing their own fears onto their children. If parents speak positively about their dental visits in a happy manner and avoid using negative words or descriptions about the dentist, then it’s likely that they’ll have no reason to exhibit a fear either.
Young children may be fussy or require distraction during their visit. It’s perfectly fine if they want to bring along their favorite stuffed toy to help them feel more brave or comfortable. Our goal at Stout Dentistry is to clean your child’s teeth in a fun and non-threatening manner. We are happy to help both you and your child navigate any dental anxiety they may display.
Our Eastover Dental Practice
is conveniently located in Charlotte NC.
If you have been experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned in this article it may be time to see Dr. Stout. Schedule an appointment with Stout Dentistry. Give us a call today at 704.332.7737.