A child's first visit to the orthodontist can seem scary, especially if they're not prepared. According to recent statistics from Delta Dental Plans Association (DDPA) the number of kids who are afraid to visit a dentist is almost equal to the amount of adults that are as well.
The survey found that:
- 48 percent of parents are nervous about going to the dentist, and 47 percent of their children are as well.
- While mothers were more nervous than fathers (55 percent compared to 40 percent), these numbers indicate a real connection between parental fears and those of their children.
Even though these statistics pertain to dentists, kids likely won't know the difference. As they boost themselves into the orthodontist chair and sit under the same big, bright lights close to medical tools, the fear is most likely there as well.
Calm your child's fears with these three tips in mind:
- Be positive: If your child asks about the orthodontist, try and answer their questions in a positive light, without being untruthful. Lying to them will only create more issues in the future.
- Play the part at home: Before your child's appointment, act out what will happen. Use a stuffed animal or other toy and mimic, to the best of your ability, the time they will spend in the orthodontist chair. If it seems like a fun, different experience, your child will be more curious than afraid to experience the real thing later on.
- Start young: Optimal oral healthcare can be achieved by starting at the appropriate age, between the ages of nine and 14. Beginning orthodontic appointments early on will make your child more accustomed to the idea of it becoming a regular appointment in their life.
Find more oral healthcare tips for children, or schedule a first visit with Dr. Tanya Vaysman of KidsBracesNYC today on our website.