Putting the Spotlight on Children’s Dental Health
Let’s Make Dental Visits More Fun (and Stress-free) for Our Little Patients
This month, let’s put a focus on the oral health of little ones.
We all know how challenging it can be at times to get a child interested in learning to properly care for their teeth and gums. But fortunately, there are a few things every dental professional can do in order to make things more fun and exciting for younger patients (or in some cases, to help calm their nerves).
These things include:
1. Quizzing them on fun dental facts during their cleaning
Why not teach your younger patient about a few interesting dental facts during their visit? Fun little facts like, “did you know that ancient toothpastes used to include crushed eggshells and honey?” may incite more curiosity about oral health, and will help to get their mind on something else if they happen to be a little anxious in the chair.
2. Giving them a toothbrush choice
During their appointment, tell your little patient that he or she can choose from a number of different toothbrush designs/colours before they leave. This will give them something to look forward to, and will help to open them up to the idea that oral health care can be fun.
3. Letting them take a peek inside his or her mouth with the intraoral camera
The intraoral camera is not only an educational tool, but it’s really quite fun to use with patients (that is, if there isn’t any bad news lurking in the mouth!). Show your child patient close-up images of their teeth and educate them along the way. Children are very visual, so they’ll likely appreciate seeing their own teeth on the screen.
4. Talking to their parent or guardian
It doesn’t hurt to have a brief discussion with the child’s caretaker to discuss anything that could be useful to know about the child. Ask them questions like, “Does [name] have a favourite cartoon or video game character that I can mention during their appointment?” or, “Does [name] have any special events coming up that I can ask them about?” Learning a little bit about your patient can help you to provide a more personalized, comforting and fun experience!
So… how do you make dentistry fun for your child patients?
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