We’re nice people. We really are.
At UPD Dental Associates we do everything we can to make our patients comfortable and make their overall experience a pleasant one; but we also understand that many people, especially little people, have an irrational fear of visiting the dentist.
So let’s team up, you the parents and us the caregivers, to lower that anxiety and start your kids on a lifelong path to good oral health.
For our part, we try to make our offices fun, well-lit places where kids can be themselves. With our video game centers and prize machines, we’re creating environments children will love. For your part as parents, you’ll need to set the stage for success. There are numerous resources for parents wanting to reduce their children’s fear of the dentist but here are a few tips:
- Start them young. Children who visit a dentist by their first birthday never learn to fear the experience.
- Avoid war stories. Exaggerated tales about your ”bad” dental experiences will raise a child’s anxiety quicker than just about anything.
- Avoid frightening words like “drill” and “shot.” To children those words are triggers that can quickly spiral them into fear.
- Emphasize that good dental care is not an option. Children are smart and if they understand that the consequences of avoiding the dentist are much more severe than a visit, they’re more likely to accept the experience willingly.
- Make dental care fun! Celebrate your children’s brushing and flossing success and treat their dental visits as a reinforcement of that success rather than a punishment for failure.
Taking the fear out of the dental visit is not always easy but the relationship between parent and care-provider is simple. We are all working toward a short list of common goals: to make sure your children have pain free teeth, that they have beautiful smiles and that they establish good oral habits that will last for the rest of their lives.