Children’s Dental Visits: Parents, Prepare Yourselves

Children experience many firsts: first tooth, first words, first step, first birthday and first haircut. Parents want to be prepared for every step of their child’s new life experiences, including dental visits. Only parents willing to model positive attitudes should accompany their child on a dental visit.

Parents averse to their own dental visits may transmit negative messages to children before, during and after a dental treatment. “Fearful parents can actually create a nervous and anxious child,” says Jane Soxman, DDS, pediatric dentist and Diplomate of the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry. “Parents who are afraid of the dentist need to change their mindset.”

Most children are not only comfortable but even curious during a first dental exam and cavity-filling procedures. However, a child may become problematic when the accompanying parent laces soothing messages with hints of fear or anxiety and relays incorrect assumptions about procedures.

“Because parents’ interpretations and expectations towards dental visits can be quite different from the child’s, parents need to be honest with themselves about their views of the dentist,” says Dr. Soxman. “If a parent has severe dental anxieties, he or she needs to make every effort not to pass those fears to the child.”

“Parents’ presence is support enough for the child,” added Dr. Soxman, who emphasizes the importance of parental presence for the first exam and until the age of 4, for restorative treatments.

Pretreatment meetings with a dentist provide directions and guidelines for the parent if he or she wishes to accompany their child during treatment. Parents learn how to provide moral support and to maintain a low, calm voice. Dr. Soxman suggests that the parent not “parrot” the dentist’s requests but support the dentist as the authority figure during procedures. It is also important for the same parent to accompany the child during each sequential visit to fill any cavities.

“A parent’s positive presence during early dental visits will empower a child to a lifetime of positive dental experiences,” said Dr. Soxman.

source: knowyourteeth.com website

For more articles on dental health, see our main blog page.

We Look Forward To Welcoming You And Your Child…

You will find our office to be a pleasant and caring environment. We know a positive experience can set the tone for your child’s future dental health. That is why our office has been designed to be “kid friendly”. Even more importantly, our pediatric dentists and professional staff have dedicated their careers to helping children. We establish trust with your child by creating a safe and happy place for them to be. The latest in dental technology is combined with genuine compassion and concern.

We are open Monday through Saturday and offer appointments as early as 7:30am

The first checkup is recommended at the first birthday. Our patients generally stay with us until they graduate high school. We are proud to say we are now seeing the children of former patients, as the practice was established in 1973 by Dr. Robert Harmon.

We have 24 hour coverage for our patient’s dental emergencies. There is a pediatric dentist on call at all times. Should you need after hours advice or emergency care, simply dial our telephone number and our message will direct you.

Are we accepting new patients? Yes, absolutely! We are happy to welcome new patients to our practice and we appreciate your referring your friends and family to us.




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