Children need regular dental care as they develop. Healthy teeth and gums ensure that children can communicate clearly and eat a varied and healthy diet. But one of the problems that parents face when taking their child to the dentist — especially for their first dental visit — is dental anxiety. If your child feels anxious about going to the dentist, a pediatric dentist can help to alleviate that anxiety.
A typical dentist's office is a scary place for children. A pediatric dental office, however, takes away the fear in numerous ways.
Toys, activities and rewards
The environment within a pediatric dental office can help to put a child at ease the moment you walk through the door. Before and after dental treatment, children have toys to play with and activities to take part in. And pediatric dentists often reward their young patients with little toys or stickers after dental treatment.
This type of positive reinforcement can make dental trips a fun experience. Your child may also look forward to, rather than fear, their next dental appointment.
Clear and warm communication
The dental staff in a pediatric dental office know that communication is key when dealing with young patients. As such, the environment in a pediatric dental office is warm and inviting. Pediatric dentists ensure that they speak to their young patients with a gentle and soothing tone.
Engagement through questions
Good pediatric dentists know how to interact with children as they administer dental treatment. For instance, a typical pediatric dentist will know all about children's cartoons, books, and characters. This allows them to converse with children on familiar and fun topics during treatment. Not only does this help children get to know their dentist better, but it also distracts them from the treatment.
Child-friendly dental tools
Pediatric dentists know how scary dental tools such as scrapers and mirrors can look to children. So the tools that a pediatric dentist uses will often be smaller than traditional dental tools found in general dental offices. Pediatric dental tools may also be colorful or shaped like cartoon characters or animals. In addition, pediatric dental treatment rooms often employ cheerful colors like red and blue.
Laughing gas for anxiety
Laughing gas, or nitrous oxide, is safe for children that suffer from dental anxiety. With careful application of laughing gas, children feel comfortable while remaining awake during dental treatment. In addition, laughing gas also wears off very quickly after its use.
If your child feels anxious about visiting a dentist, consider choosing a children's dentist. Pediatric dentists have a child-friendly manner and approach to providing dental care.