Preparing Your Little One for a Trip to the Dentist

As a parent, you want the best for your child, whether it’s the best education, the best nutrition, or the best medical care. It goes without saying that you also want the best for your child’s dental health. That’s why you start practicing good dental care habits early. You practice brushing with a soft toothbrush and gentle, fluoride-free children’s toothpaste. You even practice flossing with colorful kid’s flossers. The next step in ensuring the lifelong health of your child’s smile includes scheduling her first visit with a qualified family dentist. While a trip to the dentist might seem like a fun prospect for some children, others might feel some anxiety about this new experience. You can help your little one feel confident about visiting the dentist by taking a few simple steps.

Create Positive Expectations with Encouraging Language

You may be one of the many adult Americans who feel apprehensive or even frightened by the prospect of visiting the dentist. However, creating a positive experience for your child depends on you controlling your anxiety so that your negative feelings don’t influence your little one. Avoid scary words such as “pull,” “yank,” “needle,” “drill,” or “poke.” Discuss with your child what she can expect from her trip to dentist, such as learning how to brush and floss properly or the possibility of getting to see and touch a plastic model of a mouth. Try conversation starters like: “The dentist is going to explore your teeth with a tiny mirror. What do you think he’ll find there?” or “The technician will take a special picture of your mouth called an x-ray. That’s like a picture of your bones. How cool is that?”

Having an Great Experience at the Office

The front office staff at a family dental practice like Wynnewood Dental Arts will welcome your child to the office with a smile. Remember, dental professionals are just as invested in the health of your child’s mouth as you, so they want this to be a fun, educational experience as well. When you enter the examination room, the hygienist will focus on helping your little one feel confident and empowered. We encourage parents to ask questions; this will motivate your child to ask questions as well. If a child feels more engaged in their dental health, they will be more likely to start healthy at-home dental care habits and they will feel more excited about their next visit to the dentist.

Scheduling Your Child’s Appointment

Children should visit the dentist before their first birthday for an initial screening. Regular checkups and cleanings are recommended for children aged 2 and older. Do you have a little one in need of a screening or checkup? Please call our Wynnewood dentist office at (610) 228-4452 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Thomas DeFinnis. Our office is near Center City in Philadelphia and we serve patients in the 19096 area.

Dental Fear, Early Dental Care, Oral Hygiene, Preventive Dentistry