Helping the Kids Understand the Dentist

Young kids go through a lot with their teeth. Most children experience losing teeth around the age of five or six, and from there it can take several years for all of their baby teeth to come out and their adult teeth to grow back in. While the tooth fairy is awesome, helping kids understand the importance of great dental care and going to the dentist can be difficult.

No one enjoys laying under a bright light and having your mouth poked and prodded, especially four year old child. Then you have to explain things like getting wisdom teeth extracted, and getting braces put on. Dental care can be a confusing thing to a child, so here are some great ways to explain to them what taking care of your mouth is all about.

Brushing –

Getting kids to brush regularly and consistently can be difficult. The average attention span of a child is about fifteen seconds, and you need them to remain on task for about two minutes. There are all types of creative ways for children to brush, but the most effective way is through getting an electric toothbrush that connects to your smartphone. These toothbrushes have excellent, built-in apps, that are specifically designed to engage with children. The app has fun and interactive games that show the child what tooth is being brushed, and what spots have been missed. Usually there is a reward or benefit for both how long the child brushes and how many days in a row they have brushed.

Wisdom Teeth –

As the kids get older, they will most likely start to experience wisdom teeth coming in and they will begin to experience the pain as well. Since wisdom teeth come in at different times for everyone, getting regular check-ups at the dentist with x-rays can be valuable to help stay on top of this. When it is time to get the wisdom teeth removed, a strategy for helping kids cope with the pain is to make this a special event. Get them a special treat or present for when they come out of the surgery. Having something to look forward to will make this process much easier for the child to handle.

Braces –

Children (and parents) tend to look forward to this the least out of all the dental activities. For children, not only is getting braces on painful, from a social perspective it is a critical blow as well. For parents, braces can be expensive and also extremely time consuming, as you are having to take your child to the office every couple weeks. Making sure you are aware of any social anxiety the child is experiencing will be important during this time. Also making sure your fridge is stocked with lots of soft and cold food will be a great help to the kids!

Getting your children in the right mindset for the dentist can be easy if you take the time to talk with them and include them in the conversation.