I am proud to say that I have all my own teeth at the age of 65. While that may not sound unusual to some people, everyone in my family who is my age or older wears dentures. I always tell people that that flossing is the key to good dental health. I have arthritis in my hands, but I don't let it keep me from flossing every day. My trick is to use those little "flossers" you can buy at the drug store. They have plastic handles floss stretched out on top of the handle. These make flossing easier on days when my arthritis is acting up. I started this blog to let other people know that they can keep their teeth healthy into old age when they take care of them. If you have hand pain, find ways to make flossing easier, like I did.
Teaching your children the importance of great dental hygiene and routine dental care from a young age is a great way to instill positive lifelong dental habits. However, many children have at least a small amount of fear or anxiety over going to their first dental exam and cleaning appointment. If your child is in this boat, the good news is that you can take steps to quell your child's nerves and help him or her feel more confident leading up to that first dental appointment.
Get Educated in a Fun Way
Helping your child understand just why seeing a dentist regularly is so important can help them get over some of their fears of the unknown. Your child should understand that seeing a dentist for exams and cleanings is just as important as seeing his or her family doctor for routine check-ups, and will help keep teeth and gums nice and healthy. For young children, however, explaining this isn't always so straight-forward. You may want to consider checking out a children's book from the local library about going to the dentist, or watching a television episode where one of your child's favorite cartoon characters goes to the dentist. This will help your child learn in a way that is relatable.
Swing By the Dental Office
Sometimes, children are worried about going to the dentist because they're uncomfortable in new or unfamiliar surroundings--or because they get nervous about meeting new people, such as dentists and hygienist. If you suspect this to be the case, why not call your dental office and see if they would be okay with you bringing your child by to meet the staff? Many family-friendly dentist offices are happy to accommodate these requests, and this can be a great way for your child to overcome some of those fears before his or her appointment.
Bring Your Child to a Cleaning
Seeing you have your teeth examined and cleaned may also help your child understand that exams and cleanings aren't a big deal; if you have an appointment coming up with your dentist, ask if they would allow your child to sit-in on the appointment. Generally, if your child is old enough to sit still on his or her own throughout the appointment, this isn't a problem--but it's always a good idea to make sure.
Taking these measures can help reduce your child's nerves over his or her first dentist appointment. Contact a clinic, like Justice Dental, for more help.