It’s every parent’s worst nightmare when their kids hate the dentist. What can you do? They need their teeth cleaned, but obviously you don’t have the energy to deal with your kid crying into the carpet, arms going limp as you hoist them off the floor. In their defense, the dentist can be scary. No one really prods around in their mouth all the time or has such bright and scary alien equipment. BUT, there’s some good news in all this – we’re a special kind of dentist office.
While we can’t guarantee a fuss-free zone completely, we do have a few tips to share that may help.
- Start Early. While it seems like a hassle, the younger your kids are when going to the dentist, often the more comfortable they are as they grow up. “This will provide your child with a ‘dental home’ where all her needs – whether a periodic preventive visit or an emergency – will be taken care of,” says Rhea Haugseth, D.M.D., president of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry.
- Avoid the Details. Kids love to ask “Why?” When taking them to the dentist, it’s best to leave out some of the scary details. Keeping things simple like, “The dentist is going to clean your teeth just like you do every night,” and let the ambiguity work in your favor. The more they ask, the more scary things may seem.
- Act It Out. Practice runs can be a saving grace with your kids from kindergarten to high school. Optimize on that tool and act out what it will be like for your kid to go to the dentist.
- Don’t Expect Perfection. There likely will be fussing. Anytime we pull kids away from their play time or favorite movie, they’re not going to be happy. Expect some grumpiness in the car ride and inside the office.
- Make It Magical. Naturally you’re wondering what on earth we’re talking about. You may not know this, but Dr. Timothy Moore is actually a well-studied magician and will perform magic tricks chairside to help kids of all ages feel a little more at ease during their visit.
While we all try to figure out the perfect formula for getting kids to like the dentist, the most important thing is simply to take them no matter what. Your child’s oral health is more important than a minor afternoon breakdown on the carpet. We’ll take them just as they are – grumpy and all!
We are a high-end family dentist office serving you centrally in Columbus. We’re easy to get to from Dublin, Hilliard, Upper Arlington, and Worthington, and we’d love to meet you!
If you’d like to schedule an appointment for your child, give us a call at (614) 459-5205 or contact us online by clicking the button below.