First Dental Visit
For some children and parents, the first visit to the dentist can be a stressful situation. But there are ways that the dentist can make the occasion enjoyable for everyone concerned. Establishing trust between the child and the dentist is all-important because it is this relationship that sets a positive tone for the rest of your child’s life.
Often mothers and fathers are more apprehensive than their children, so care must be taken not to be over solicitous. For example, don’t say things like “Don’t worry,” or “It won’t hurt much.” Children can sense their parent’s discomfort. That is the reason why we prefer to meet the children away from their parents so that we can relate on a one-to-one basis with the child. The parent’s presence in the treatment area, although intended to provide comfort to the child, instead indicates that the mom or dad is there to provide protection against these “strangers.” In some cases, treatment can be seriously hindered. Obviously, as at home, the parents and dentist should establish parameters of behavior appropriate with the child’s age and development. The “Tell-Show-Do” method is based on showing the patient what he already knows and then tying it in with something new – first the familiar and then the unfamiliar. “This is your toothbrush . . . and this is my toothbrush,” or “Here is your mirror and this is my mirror.” In this way, all the dental paraphernalia can be introduced without causing alarm.
At our office, we believe honesty is the best policy. Drugging a child may make things easier for the dentist, but it does not cure phobias. We believe a temporary escape from reality encourages a dependency on drugs and prevents the dentist and child from relating to each other in a positive way. Childhood is a time for positive learning. Our role as children’s dentists is not merely to clean teeth or fill cavities, but also to “grow” fearless adult patients. Even children who are mentally or physically compromised benefit from this nurturing and learning atmosphere.
Our atmosphere is imaginative and creative including a reception area with toys and an open treatment area where several children can be together watching TV for entertainment and education and attended to by a staff with uninhibited personalities.
Our office is designed to make dentistry for kids easier and more comfortable. Dentistry in reality is no longer a painful experience, but some of the old myths die-hard. Parents should come to our office with an open mind and try to forget their own past experiences.
By bringing your child to a pediatric dentist as early as age one year, you can ensure the timely prevention of dental disease and at the same time provide your child with an upbeat experience that can last a lifetime.
Thank you for choosing us to care for your most valuable possessions . . . . your children.