Keeping your kids busy in the dentist's waiting room
Taking your children to the dentist can be a difficult process, particularly if they are scheduled for an invasive procedure. Before you enter the dentist's consult room, however, you may have an entirely different battle on your hands- keeping your children entertained and well-behaved in the waiting room. If your child has a dentist's visit coming up, check out these helpful tips for how to keep your kids busy in the dentist's waiting room.
Book an early appointment
If your child is young, you may find that booking your dental visit for early in the day will help combat any afternoon irritability- particularly if they still need an afternoon nap. A dental appointment scheduled for first thing in the morning is advised, after your child has had a full night of restful sleep, and a hearty breakfast. An early morning appointment will also help you to avoid longer waiting times, so you won't need to keep your child occupied in the waiting room for long.
Take the pram
For younger children who are particularly active or inquisitive, strapping them into their pram while you wait can save lots of unnecessary difficulty in the waiting room. Don't forget to take a few of your child's favourite toys and books for them to play with, as sitting stationary in the waiting room can become tedious for them very quickly without a little distraction. If your dental appointment is running behind schedule when you check in at reception, having the pram on hand will also allow you take your child for a push around the block in the pram- a little sunshine and fresh air is a great way to spend your waiting time.
Have a trick up your sleeve
Despite the best of planning and intentions, children find it difficult to wait patiently- particularly if there is a dental appointment looming that they're a little unsure about. Plan for this by taking something special along to the appointment that will distract your child. A new or seldom-played with toy, a delicious treat, or their favourite show on a tablet pc will channel your child's energy and give you a short reprieve before the appointment.
Choose a family-friendly dental clinic
While most dental clinics cater for all ages, many parents actively seek out a family-friendly dentist to ensure their children will be comfortable and happily accommodated. Many family-friendly dental clinics have designated children's corners in the waiting room, with toys, games and even children's television programming to keep the kids busy while they wait. An inviting space for your children at the dentist will not only keep them occupied before their appointment- it may also help to allay their fears of the appointment itself.
Contact your local family-friendly dental clinic for helpful advice on keeping your children happy and occupied in the waiting room.