If your child is afraid and scared to go to the dentist, there are a few things that you can try. Start off by being a good role model: children will want to go to the dentist and take care of their teeth when they see you brushing and flossing your own teeth, and having a positive attitude toward dental visits. At my office, we try to introduce children to the dental office environment as young as possible – often before the first tooth even erupts. We encourage new parents to bring in their babies at their own appointments so that their children can become comfortable in and familiar with the dental office setting. Through coaching at home by the parents and repeated positive exposures to my office and my staff, children are often able to overcome their anxiety and fear of the unknown in the dental chair. It also helps if the child watches an older sibling behaving well in the chair. With some especially fearful children, we’ve had to try up to three or four visits, every six months, to get them relaxed enough to complete a proper examination. As a last resort, if you’ve tried the above techniques and the child is still not cooperative, try a pediatric specialist.
Dr. Chris Kan is a Kitsilano Dentist and since 1998, has been practicing family and cosmetic dentistry with a conservative, “less is best” approach. By integrating innovative technologies with a passion for excellence, Dr. Kan and his team provide thorough, comprehensive care for everyone from toddlers to seniors. Contact Dr. Kan at 604-224-8000 or at www.arbutusdentist.com