Many people fear the dentist. While dental visits can increase stress levels, it's important to make going to the dentist as routine as possible for your children. When you all go to the same dentist for cleanings, you can bring your child with you to your own visit to model good oral hygiene in front of your child. Even when you have anxiety of your own about going to the dentist, it is not fair of you to push this anxiety onto your children. Work closely with your dentist about your own fears, so that you can show your children the importance of taking care of their teeth.
Find a Family Dentist in Your Area
A family dentist will treat all members of your family. While you can try a pediatric dentist for your child, this is usually not necessary. When you find a family dental practice that everyone can go to, you can develop a good relationship with the office. It will be easier to make appointments for all of you at the same time, and you will get to know the practice better than if you were all going to different dentists.
Ease Your Child's Fears with Good Modeling
Your child learns about the world from you. How you respond to certain situations and how you behave in general is being watched by your children. When you go to the dentist without outward fear, you are being a good role model for your children. Talk with your child about why you care about going to the dentist, and why you want to take good care of your teeth. If your child is a bit older and can sit still for long enough, you can even bring your child with you to a dental visit so that they can see that it is no big deal.
Keep Going to the Dentist on a Regular Basis
You and each one of your family members should be going to the dentist at least twice a year. If you bring your child with you to your own appointments, this can mean you go to the office on four routine visits a year. This makes your child comfortable with the office, and allows them to see that going to the dentist is just something else that you have to do to take care of your body.
When you want to reduce your child's stress about the dentist, it's most useful to make visits as routine as possible.