Nightmare Dental Appt

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-22-2007
Nightmare Dental Appt
Wed, 09-15-2010 - 1:36pm

Soooo, anybody have any ideas how to get our kiddos through a dental appointment without the world crashing down around us?

DD had two dental appointments in the last few for a routine cleaning and one for getting sealants on 4 teeth. At both appointments she was really hesitant to open her mouth, but she let them scrape and poke and prod without much issue. The real issue came when they wanted to use the polisher.

For some reason, my oral SEEKER turned into a complete Oral avoider and curled up in the fetal position and started crying and absolutely REFUSED to let them use the polisher on her teeth.

She did eventually let them put the sealants on but the 30 min appt turned into an hour and 10 minutes. The only reason we made it through and got the job done was because of our WONDERFULLY patient hygenist!
We do music therapy with DD and I brought the headphones along she listened while they did the sealants but does anyone have any other ideas?

I'm already dreading her next appt and it isn't until Feb! What can I do between now and then to lessen the fear and trauma? We have a new Oral B spinning brush for the family to use, I just have to convince her to give it a try.

any ideas?

Avatar for firstglimpse
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-08-2003
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 12:19pm

I think the dentist office is used to seeing scared children.... darn, they are used to scared ADULTS!!

There is one parent at our school who is a dentist & he'll come late to chess club (he's one of the coordinators) due to adult patients not being able to settle down. I have panic attacks while in the chair myself & the dentist was patient while I jolt up frantically gasping for air.

There is a large fear of dentists. Plain & simple. I think if you start to fear the next appointment, you'll make her more scared.

Vibrating brushes may help. Maybe you can have her lied down & floss her teeth for her (getting used to hands being in her mouth).

As mom_ladybug suggested, call ahead & see what they do with special needs children. I wouldn't be surprised, if they made the appointment while you were there, they went ahead & blocked in some extra time. Another option might be to find a pediatric dentist office.

At our dentist office they didn't do anything at the first appointment to stress out the child. They did not polish my DD's teeth & told me before hand they probably would not even get into her mouth. They had her practice opening her mouth & then let her handle the instruments & then she did open wide enough for the dentist to look for any cavities. But she freaked with the polisher & they only played with it for her & then told her next time they would use it. Now ... she squirrels food. So last time on one side of her mouth she had cavities upper & lower. Even needed a root canal & she did wonderful! (age 5)

With my DS (he's the one with the greater sensory issues) I used to have him sit in the dentist office while I got worked on before his appointment. My new dentist doesn't allow it, but our last one did.

My guess is, this was not a sensory issue, but rather simple fear of the unknown. So next time may be a whole different experience. But if you feel they pushed her too hard, then maybe look for a pediatric dentist office.

Good luck

"Only when we are sick of our sickness shall we cease to be sick."

~ Lao-Tzu, from The Tao Te Cheng

"Only when we are sick of our sickness shall we cease to be sick."

~ Lao-Tzu, from The Tao Te Cheng