Family health is one of your main concerns in life; you want your kids to be at their best at all times, and make sure as they grow older they keep their wellbeing in mind. And to do that, you have to address any and all medical fears at a young age. Going to the doctor can be a scary thing as an adult, so imagine what your child feels, with little life experience and no idea what to expect.
So, with all that in mind, here are a few ideas on how to make various health appointments less scary for your kids. Sometimes it can be hard to even get the kids in the car when they know where they’re headed, and it’s about time we allayed those fears!
Don’t Lie, Be Briefly Honest
Being honest with your kids is the number one way to ensure they trust you to take them to health appointments in the future, and it also helps to clear up fears in the most effective way possible.
After all, it’s the fear of the unknown that’s making your child cry at the prospect of seeing a dentist, so instead of telling them about braces and treatment options they may have to go through, tell them in the simplest terms about what is going to happen at their checkup. Be sure to ask the dentist to explain it as well, to further put your child’s mind at ease.
Show Your Child You Understand
If your child knows you understand how they’re feeling, and how scared they are during the drive up to see the doctor, they’re going to feel more at ease. They’re not going to feel ignored, or like Mommy and Daddy aren’t on their side, which you’d never want!
They’ll feel supported instead, and like they’ve got someone to back them up in case something goes wrong. And when you’re a small person against the world, this is essential for developing skills like courage and confidence.
Talk About It
Finally, don’t be afraid to talk to your child about their fears – they’ll open up about them much more than you think. Ask them what’s making them so scared, and what you could do to make them feel better, short of not taking them in the first place. You’ve got to reach a compromise with your child, for the time being, that’ll keep them comfortable and stop them from seeing you as the bad guy.
This will also help them later on in life, as it’ll ensure they have a bit more discipline when it comes to facing their fears and/or challenges, and it’ll remind them just what kind of parents they have at home. That makes for some very secure childhood memories!
Health appointments can be very scary when you’re small. Make sure your child knows what to expect, who they can trust, and that a doctor and/or dentist isn’t the big bad guy they first thought!