As a parent or caregiver, you want your child to have the best dental office experience possible. At Smile Designers, we want the same. It’s important to us that our young patients feel comfortable before, during, and after any dental care procedure, so we’ve put together this compilation of questions you can ask your child’s dentist before a scheduled appointment. We feel that the right preparation can help an appointment go smoothly, putting your child at ease and helping them see that the dentist’s office is nothing to be afraid of.
How Long Will The Appointment Take?
It’s good to know beforehand whether the appointment will be brief or on the longer side. This way, you can plan activities to entertain your child in the waiting room, and you can take measures to help your child feel more relaxed going into an appointment that will take a bit longer. Help them get a good night’s sleep beforehand, have them listen to relaxing music on the ride over to the dental office, and let them enjoy snacks that put them in a good mood.
What Can My Child Eat Or Drink Before The Appointment?
Speaking of snacks, be sure to ask what your child can and cannot (or should not) consume before their appointment. Especially if your child is prone to an upset stomach, certain foods or drinks may be off limits.
Also find out what foods the pediatric dentist recommends to help your child feel more positive and relaxed going into the appointment. What’s more, ask if there’s a food or beverage cut-off time; should your child avoid consuming anything the hour before the appointment, for example? Will your child need to go in with an empty stomach? Get clarification on this well before the appointment date so that you can prepare your child.
Can You Describe The Procedure To Me?
It’s a good idea to know more about the treatment your child will be receiving. What, exactly, is involved? When you know what to expect, you’ll be better prepared to answer your child’s questions in a reassuring manner.
For example, if it’s just an exam and a cleaning, you can let your child know that the dentist will check teeth to make sure they’re healthy and strong, and the hygienist will clean teeth to make them shiny and even healthier! If sealants are being applied, you can assure your child that it will be a fairly short appointment and it won’t hurt. If it’s a filling, you’ll need to prepare your child for a slightly longer procedure and perhaps a little discomfort.
If you need help with finding ways to answer your child’s questions and explain a procedure without frightening them, contact our family dentistry practice in Longmont. We’ll be happy to offer constructive ideas!
How Will This Treatment Help My Child?
Knowing the benefits your child will enjoy from the scheduled appointment and planned treatment will give you the confidence to move forward with the procedure. When your child sees that assurance in you, it can strengthen them to confidently go to the dentist’s office knowing that it will be okay.
What Side Effects Might They Experience?
Will your child feel groggy? Will their jaw ache? Will they need pain medication, soft foods, or anything in particular following the appointment to feel better?
Know what side effects, including any pain or discomfort, may be present so that you can be prepared with the right medicines and perhaps some quiet time after the appointment. Your child may be better off at home snuggling with a favorite pet or stuffed animal instead of back in school or doing errands with you.
What Books Can We Read Together To Help With Going To The Dentist?
You can find great books at the library or your local bookstore that take the scariness out of seeing the dentist! Here are some suggestions:
- The Berenstain Bears Visit the Dentist, by Jan and Stan Berenstain
- Just Going To The Dentist, by Mercer Mayer
- Peppa Pig Dentist Trip, by Scholastic
- Dentist, by Jess Stockham
There are many other great titles out there that you can read together with your kids to prepare for a dental appointment. Ask your local librarian for assistance!
Can My Child Bring A Favorite Item?
Whether it’s a treasured stuffed animal, a security blanket, a favorite book, or any other item that can be transported easily and won’t get in the way of the dental procedure, your child’s pediatric dentist will probably be fine with them bringing a favorite item for comfort. Be sure to clear it with the dental office beforehand.
What Experience Do You Have Working With Kids
It’s a simple fact: practice makes perfect! A kids’ dentist with a lot of experience working with children will have developed a great rapport with the younger crowd and will know how to work quickly and carefully to make the visit a more positive one.
Is There Anything Else I Should Know?
The questions we’ve listed are great ones to ask, but they may not cover everything you need to know before your child’s dental appointment. Ask this open-ended question to see what else the pediatric dentist can advise.
Turn To Smile Designers For Great Dental Care For Kids
At our Longmont dental care office, we specialize in a number of areas including family dentistry. When it comes to dental care for kids, we work hard to create a relaxed environment and comfortable experience for our young patients. Make your child’s next dental appointment with Smile Designers of Longmont!