Going to the dentist is a scary idea for many children when they don’t have a cavity, so your child’s first filling may be quite daunting for them. We’ve put together a guide to help you deal with your child’s first cavity and how to prepare them for their first filling.
What To Do If Your Child Has A Cavity
Chalky white spots are often the first sign of tooth decay. Left unchecked, a white spot will turn brown in colour and grow progressively darker until it becomes a hole.
When a cavity has advanced, your child may show signs of pain or discomfort when brushing and become sensitive to cold or hot beverages.
If your child has a cavity, make an appointment with your paediatric dentist straight away. The dentist will remove the decayed part of the tooth and replace it with a filling. Even if your child does not feel any pain, demineralisation of the tooth may still be in process. Your dentist may be able to prevent a cavity from forming with a preventative fluoride treatment.
Preparing A Child For Their First Filling
Give your child as much information as you can about what is going to happen, to avoid the shock of surprises. Tell them where they will sit and how their mouth will feel strange and “sleepy” for a while. Reassure them that cavities are very common and not hard for a dentist to fix. This is not the time to blame them for poor brushing or eating habits. It is important to be positive at this time, explaining how lucky they are to have a good dentist who can fix their tooth. Avoid saying words such as “needle,” “shot” or “hurt.” Instead, go with “little poke,” “magic wand” or “sleepy juice.”
On The Day Of The Filling
On the day of the dentist visit, give your child as much control as you can in order to increase their confidence and reduce anxiety. Let them wear their favourite outfit or bring a comfort toy. Let them decide if they want you in the treatment room with them. The best thing you can do for your child is to stay calm.
After The Dentist
Plan something fun for your child after the filling. Going to the park or another favourite spot after your appointment, gives them something to look forward to and to help them feel better afterwards. You can also take your child out for a special food treat once the numbness in their mouth wears off. When everything is over and your little patient is calm, you’ll have the opportunity to emphasise prevention. This is when you can encourage them to keep up the brushing and flossing.
Caring For Children’s Teeth In Sydney
If you suspect that your child has a cavity or requires a filling, call Dental Care Glebe today to book an appointment. As a leading paediatric dentist in Sydney, our friendly and professional team can take care of all general children’s dentistry needs. Visit us today!