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Focusing on the “Little Things” Can Change a Child’s Orthodontist Experience

As a parent, prioritizing your child’s health, including their dental well-being, is crucial. They may need dental orthodontic treatment for kids, but visits to the orthodontist can instigate fear or anxiety. Learning how to focus on the smaller aspects of the experience, such as a comforting environment and patient-oriented services, can dramatically enhance your child’s perception of orthodontic visits. This helps prevent fears and ensures they receive the dental attention they need.

This article provides an understanding of how these ‘little things’ can significantly shape your child’s experience with dental orthodontic treatment for kids, aiming to make it more positive.

What Is a Dental Orthodontic Treatment for Kids?

It is essential first to understand what dental orthodontic treatment entails. This branch of dentistry focuses on correcting misaligned teeth and jaws. It can include bracesretainers, or other appliances to straighten teeth and improve their overall function. Orthodontic treatment is typically recommended for children between the ages of 7 and 12, as this is when their permanent teeth come in.

By providing your child with orthodontic treatments, you are reducing the risk of dental decay and gum disease and improving her dental health for the years to come.

Signs Your Child May Need Orthodontic Care

One of the easiest ways to determine if it’s time to take your child to an orthodontist is if you notice any of these early warning signs:

1. Early or Late Loss of Baby Teeth

Although there are ranges of normal variation, losing baby teeth too early or too late can create problems with the permanent ones that should replace them. A child orthodontist is an expert in recognizing and treating adverse variations.

2. Difficulty Chewing or Biting

Eating should not hurt. Although there is discomfort associated with “teething,” painful chewing may indicate there are orthodontic problems that should be addressed.

3. Mouth Breathing

Although orthodontists cannot correct mouth breathing, there are orthodontic problems that can develop as a result of this pattern of breathing, which can be addressed and corrected by an orthodontist.

4. Jaws Shifting or Clicking

Shifting of the lower jaw due to a bite problem can lead to jaw pain and other dental consequences. Orthodontists are experts in evaluating how your teeth come together and can make sure they’re properly aligned.

5. Crooked Teeth

Children orthodontists can modify growth to correct crossbite, crooked teeth, and malocclusion related to skeletal issues.

Why My Child Is Scared of the Dentist?

Many people often find themselves asking, “why am I scared of the dentist?” This fear is not exclusive to young patients but also affects some adults. While the specific reasons for this fear may vary, it’s a common issue that many grapple with.

Some possible factors could include:

Influenced by Others

Many children create perceptions around dental orthodontic treatment for kids based on the experiences shared by members of their family or friends. Negative experiences or fears expressed by these trusted people can significantly impact a child’s perspective and lead to anxiety regarding dental visits or orthodental treatments for kids.

Sensory Issues

Children dealing with sensory processing disorders may find the plethora of sensory stimuli in a dental office overly overwhelming. Bright overhead lights, the noise of dental equipment, and the sterilized smell can trigger intense fear when they go for dental orthodontics for kids.

Development Stage

Understanding the concept of permanent teeth is tricky for young kids. They might also not comprehend the necessity and benefits of regular dental visits or ortho dental treatment for kids. This lack of understanding can lead to fears and anxiety in a clinical environment they perceive as daunting.

Sensitive Gag Reflex or Difficulty Breathing

For some children, having a sensitive gag reflex or difficulty breathing through their nose can make dental procedures and orthodontic treatments more uncomfortable and thus cause anxiety.

A feeling of Vulnerability

Sitting in a dentist’s chair, especially during procedures like applying traditional metal braces or any other type of braces, can make a child feel vulnerable or out of control. This invasive interaction within their mouth space can create a sense of discomfort and fear.

Fear of Pain

Tooth decay and the resulting treatments often cause significant discomfort to children. They frequently associate these experiences with pain and discomfort, which buttresses a deep-set fear of dental and orthodontic treatment for kids.

Fear of the Unknown

Children can also be anxious about the unknown aspects of dental appointments. They may fret over unfamiliar procedures like fitting removable aligners or other types of braces and the anticipated discomfort that could follow.

Previous Negative Experiences

A negative encounter in the past, such as experiencing pain during the fitting of traditional metal braces or needing jaw surgery, can lead to a lifelong fear of dental visits. These experiences can cause children to associate the aim for a beautiful smile with negative emotions and potential discomfort.

How Can You Make Your Child Not to be Scared of the Dentist?

Knowing how to not be scared of the dentist can be a crucial part of ensuring a positive orthodontic experience for your children. Here are some tips:

  • Set a Good Example. Children often emulate adults’ behavior. If you display a nonchalant attitude towards dental visits, your child is likely to do the same.
  • Choose the Right Dentist. Selecting a pediatric dentist who specializes in treating children can make a significant difference. These professionals are trained to handle children’s fears and anxieties, making the experience less stressful.
  • Start Early. Introduce your child to the pediatric dentist at a young age, even before they need orthodontic care. This will help them become more familiar with the environment and create a positive association.
  • Choose the Right Orthodontist. As mentioned earlier, finding an orthodontist who works with children can make all the difference. Research different options and read reviews to find the best fit for your child.
  • Communicate Openly. It’s important to talk to your child about their fears and concerns. Listen to them and validate their feelings. This will help them feel more comfortable and in control during the appointment.
  • Use Positive Reinforcement: Before, during, and after the appointment, praise your child for their bravery and good behavior. This will boost their confidence and make future visits less intimidating.
  • Make it Fun. Some orthodontic offices offer fun amenities such as games, toys, or TVs to help distract children during appointments. Please encourage your child to bring their favorite toy or book to provide comfort.

Enhancing Your Child’s Orthodontic Experience With Lake Jeanette, Your Greensboro Pediatric Dentist

By focusing on the “little things,” such as choosing the right orthodontist, communicating openly with your child, and making the experience a positive and fun one, you can significantly improve your child’s visit to the orthodontist.

Remember, creating a positive experience now can set them up for a lifetime of good oral health habits. A vital part of this process is finding the right dentist for your child. Call Lake Jeanette, your Greensboro pediatric dentist, who is dedicated to providing the best care for your child.

Don’t let fear hold your child back from receiving the necessary dental care they need. Keep these tips in mind and see the difference they can make in your child’s orthodontic journey. Schedule an appointment with us, and let our professional dental team help your child achieve a happy and healthy smile that lasts for years.

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