Sometimes you come across a small person that needs all the confidence boosting you can muster. These are patients that need lots of extra care because already in their short life they have been ‘put off’ going to the dentist.
There can be all sorts of reasons for this they maybe autistic, have learning difficulties, be shy, have medical problems or that they have already had a horrible experience at the dentist.
We have sat on the floor drawing pictures, looked at teeth whist a lovely lad did a headstand in the chair and talked about everything from Dr. Who to Manchester United football club!
At The Dental Barn we have time, patience and bags of enthusiasm to try to help these youngsters. Unfortunately, we don’t always succeed, due to the severity of the circumstances, but we always try!
With frightened children we have had great success and would like to tell you a couple of stories.
A mum contacted me on Facebook and asked about her daughter who refused to go to the dentist because of past harsh treatment and I invited them to come in for a chat.
They bought some bread to feed our ducks and we sat and talked about why and what she didn’t like about going to the dentist. We set goals for treatment which she completed easily and she continues to come to the practice completely fear free. My loveliest memory was when she came rushing into the surgery saying “do you like my new sparkly leggings Ali” with not a thought about treatment.
A mum rang and explained that her daughter was 9 and that she had a huge fear of going to the dentist and of her wobbly teeth.
The dental practice I was at the time thought that she would be better to see me, as I was a mummy too. She came in for a chat and it was evident that she was terrified of everything! So, we started a plan that each time I would set her a little goal and she would get a sticker every time she achieved the goal. Goal 1 was to just get in my treatment chair, Goal 2 chair and open her mouth, Goal 3 chair, mouth and let me look at her teeth. Each goal only took 5-10 minutes and we never failed to reach them.
Fast forward 15 years and that lovely girl has turned into a dentally confident lady who told me last visit that she was off to Australia for a year and might not be back! It has been wonderful to see her grow up and for many years not bat an eyelid at coming to my practice for treatment. She’s coming in for one more visit before she goes and I may have to have a tissue in my pocket!
Time, patience and kindness are qualities that we have in abundance here at The Dental Barn.
For more information on children’s dentistry in Hailsham call us on 01323 325397.