“Visit a dentist or see a doctor?” We have this ice breaker in class where students are asked to choose between two options. When I asked this, most of them answered the latter–see a doctor.
What’s wrong with visiting a dentist? For some reasons, dental visits are not as fun as seeing a doctor. Sometimes, it can be traumatic, too, because of instances when one has to keep his or her mouth wide open and a huge scary metal goes inside and extracts that tooth that has been causing pain for days and not to mention the sensitive feeling afterwards when the anesthesia has wore off and the fact that one cannot play anything heavy like ballgames to prevent any bleeding. Not so fun, huh?
However, something can be done because even grown-ups get scared to go visit a dentist due to unpleasant childhood experiences. I have a friend who doesn’t even want to go for scaling. How hard can that be? Twenty minutes of covered face and opened mouth?
So, yes, something can be done or should be done like:
1. Tell children the importance of keeping their teeth clean and healthy.
2. Show them how to brush properly.
3. Remind them of brushing time (which is a few minutes after a meal time or before going to bed or to school).
4. Take them to dental clinics and make friends with the dentist.
5. When tooth extraction time comes, lovingly hold their hands, and tell them the privilege of getting new ones.
6. Or bribe them with some kiddie stuff after the dental procedures.
If we follow these suggestions, I believe more children would be excited to go and visit a dentist and most of all care for their teeth.
I had my scaling and filling today for less than 40 minutes. Very quick, right?