It’s common to feel anxious or nervous about things that are beyond your control. This is a common issue for adults and surprisingly common in children as they often have no say in the events that unfold around them.
It’s estimated that one in ten children has a phobia of the dentist. The good news is that your child is not alone, there are plenty of children with the same issue. The even better news is that there are things you can do to alleviate the anxiety.
1. Pick the Right Dentist
Check out this dentist Campsie and you’ll notice they are focused on making the dental experience as pleasant and relaxing as possible. They will work with you to find the best way to treat your child and reduce anxiety. That could mean adopting a sedation dentistry approach or simply taking it one step at a time.
The right dentist will relax your child making it much easier for them to deal with their dental phobia.
2. Talk To Your Child
Having chosen the best possible dentist you’ll want to spend some time talking to your child. Explain to them what will happen during the appointment, how they can pause it at any time, and how you’ll be there with them every step of the way.
Make sure you let your child ask questions and give them the answers. They should know that they can ask questions at any time, which will also help them to stay calm.
Don’t forget to explain why it is so important to visit the dentist often.
3. Do A Trial Run
You’ll now be ready to do a trial run. The ideal scenario is that you’re starting young, preventing your child from developing a dental phobia. All you have to do is visit the dental office. For the first time, your child doesn’t even have to see the dentist.
Simply knowing where they are going and what to expect will help to put their mind at rest for future appointments.
4. Distract Them
When you take your child for their genuine appointment you’ll find the best way to stop them from getting anxious is to distract them. That means telling them a story or playing a game. There are plenty of ways in which you can keep their mind busy, such as looking around the room guessing people’s occupations.
Distracting them allows your child to forget where they are and why.
5. Lead By Example
You can’t expect your child to go to the dentist unless they see you going to. In fact, this is a great way to help tackle anxiety. Book yourself an appointment and then take your child with you. They can see how calm and relaxed you are during the waiting process and when you see the dentist.
If you explain the situation to the dentist they are likely to engage with your child and this will help them to be more relaxed and confident when they come themselves.