How to survive the dentist with your toddler
I don’t know about you, but I dread the dentist. It probably has something to do with that fact that I had over half of my teeth pulled out as a kid. So of course, I was worried about my son’s first (and second) dental appointments.
The day before our first visit to the dentist, my son surprisingly woke up at 4:30 in the morning! This is a rarity for him. My son is in his three-nager years, so it is always a crap shoot as to whether or not he will nap. I was hoping to win the jackpot, and have my guy squeeze in a nap before the 3pm Dentist appointment.
The afternoon rolled on, and so far no such luck – nap mission aborted! We made it to the dentist office with our eyes barely open. I put on my brave face on for this dental experience. My son on the other hand, hopped onto the dental chair, like it was no big deal.
I informed the dental team that my son had been up since 4:30am, there guess was as good as mine in terms of the outcome of the appointment. They told me that they never expect much from a kid – especially on their first visit. Worst case scenario – they would settle for a ride in the chair.
Chair ride – ok phew, I was sure that my Tyson could handle at least that. Against all odds, and minutes after the chair adventure, Tyson agreed to a full cleaning. He didn’t even shed one tear. Then the Dentist came to check on Tyson. Nope, again no tears. He made it through the almost full hour appointment without crying! It was a miracle! Yet, I was still cringing in the corner.
Months pass and now we are on Dentist Appointment Number #2. Needless to say, I didn’t expect the same positive outcome when we went last week to the dentist. But again, Tyson surprised me! He had another full check-up and cleaning – with no tears! It’s amazing what those dental hygienists can do to make a kid comfortable. I guess I should be thankful that my son’s experiences at the dentist office have been smooth sailing. Hopefully, his third visit is a charm?!
Here are some tips on how to make it through your child’s first dentist appointment:
- Do not let your child know that you hate the dentist. (Clearly in my case, that worked!) Be positive, and remind them of all of the good things that come with seeing your dentist.
- Don’t cancel your appointment due to your child’s lack of sleep. My son made it through the appointment, and exceeded my expectations! When in doubt, give your child a chance, sometimes adrenaline trumps sleep!
- Make it a fun experience. Who doesn’t want a chair ride? Funky glasses and a new toothbrush!!
- It’s OK if your child doesn’t make it through the first appointment. Every child is different. The chair ride is good enough for the first time. The second time will be better!
About Krista Holmes
Krista Holmes, KH Mgmt, is a busy mother of two. She works behind-the-scenes in the Canadian music industry, designs several social media campaigns and manages special events. Her love for motherhood & music can be found on her blog, mommylovesmusic.wordpress.com.