Setting Your Family’s Smile Straight
- February 22, 2016
We’re almost at the end of National Children’s Dental Health Month, and we haven’t even talked about your family’s smile.
If you have children, then using any other word besides “perfect” to describe their smiles can seem offensive – even if they have legitimate issues with their orthodontic health.
Well, there is a difference between loving your child completely, warts and all, and recognizing very real (and sometimes very serious) conditions with their teeth and gums, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t do both as a parent.
If you have particularly young children, you may already be able to detect signs that their teeth aren’t growing the way they’re supposed to. What I don’t want you to do is feel bad that this is somehow your fault. Sure, genetics play a large part in determining the natural paths which our smiles take throughout our lives, but there’s so much you’ve gotten right with your children, it would be silly to ignore all of the positive similarities.
You should look at getting your child’s first orthodontic appointment as an opportunity to build upon all of those strengths by eliminating weaknesses. And those weaknesses aren’t just cosmetic, either: By failing to catch and treat an orthodontic problem, such as an overbite, while your children are still young, then the corrective procedures will become more expensive and more lengthy the older they get.
By starting your children early on a path toward proper orthodontic health, you will also be sparing them the kind of taunts that can come with irregular teeth and the braces they’ll need to correct them. Again, you can’t change human nature, but you can change a smile!
But where do you even start?
Preparing For Their First Appointment
Although 7 years of age is the ideal time to get serious about your children’s orthodontic health, by the time they are a toddler (2 ½ years old or so), you should be (or have been) instilling good dental habits in them. That way, they’ll be more likely to feel comfortable when they’re in my Boca Raton offices; having a concept about oral hygiene, no matter how simplistic, can go a long way in helping me to give them treatment.
But at the end of the day, kids are kids. Even the most ingenious methods of coaxing your little ones toward their first orthodontic appointment can fall apart if your child becomes scared or anxious.
My staff and I will do our best to make your family’s time with us as smooth as possible, but there’s only so much we can do without your help as a parent. That’s why I want to share a few tips with you that can help us achieve a better smile for your family by working together.
- Keeping it simple – Before the appointment, your child is sure to have a lot of questions; being inquisitive is what they do! However, keep your answers short and avoid any detail that their little imaginations could run away with. Also, try to avoid any negative words, like “pain,” as that will only serve to increase their anxiety.
- Chat with me first – Nobody knows your child better than you do. And that’s exactly why you should fill me in on their personalities. That way, I can attune my approach to match them better, which will only make them more at ease.
- The five-cent tour – The most frightening aspect for kids as well as adults who are afraid of the dentist is the tools of the trade. Yet it can also be the most fun for your young ones, with the correct approach. I can give them a tour of my facility and answer any questions about the equipment I use so that it removes the mystery and the fear they might be feeling.
- Back out at any time – When all else fails, and your child just isn’t comfortable, then they could be too young to receive professional treatment. It’s not anybody’s fault, but rather, it’s just recognizing that everyone is different, and your child might need to wait a few more months before we try again. Perseverance wins out, sooner or later.
Together, we can make your child feel as comfortable as ever in order to receive the orthodontic treatments which will serve them well into their adult years.
To start that process, please call me at 541-719-8260 right away, or click here to request an appointment online.
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