If you have a school-aged child who isn't looking forward to their up-and-coming dental appointment then you want to find ways to make it less stressful for them. The more you can convince them that everything is going to be all right, the easier it is going to be for you to get them in the dental chair without a fight. You can help your child make a video journal to give them a reason to want to go to the dentist. Tell them that making a video journal is a great way to document the experience and to help other kids who may be afraid of the dentist. While they may make the video for those reasons, it will ultimately help them move past their own concerns.
Start with an interview.
For the first part of the video journal, you should interview your child about their worries and concerns. Also, have them state the reason they are going to the dentist and why it's important. This will help them understand that going to the dentist is a necessity. You can lead the interview in a way that puts a positive spin on the dentist. Some questions you can ask your child include:
- Aren't you glad you are going to go to the dentist to ensure your teeth stay nice and healthy?
- How do you feel about knowing the dentist will teach you how to take better care of your teeth?
- Why do you think so many kids are worried about the dentist when dentists are there to help?
- What would you like to tell other kids that would help them feel better about going to the dentist?
By leading with these types of questions, you will be helping your child to come up with their own positive answers. This is going to help them change the way they think about their own appointment.
Record the dental visit.
The next step in the video journal will be to record your child's dental visit (if the dentist allows this). Let your child know you want to talk about how your child is feeling at the appointment. Also, explain to them that you are going to want to do a very short interview with the dentist as well. This will cause your child to focus more on the interview part of their appointment than allowing them to stress about their own fears.
Wrap it up.
After the dental visit, you can have your child wrap up the video journal by explaining how they now feel about the dentist. You can use this video in the future to remind them that there is nothing to worry about. You can also use it as a guide for their younger siblings as well, in the future.
One company that offers more information on family dental care is the Sevenoaks Dental Group.