If your child’s dentist finds tooth decay and recommends a follow-up dental visit for treatment, it’s important for your child to get care. Receiving follow-up treatment is key to keeping your child healthy.
Why it’s important to take your child for a follow-up dental visit for treatment:
- The dental team can treat tooth decay and prevent it from getting worse and causing an infection.
- Treating tooth decay can prevent pain, trouble sleeping, behavior problems, and difficulty concentrating.
- Treating tooth decay can stop it from spreading to other teeth in your child’s mouth.
Tips to prepare your child for a follow-up dental visit for treatment:
- Be positive. For example, say, “The dentist will help keep your teeth healthy.”
- Keep it short and simple. If your child asks what will happen at the visit, you can say “The dentist will fix your tooth.”
- Don't talk about shots or possible pain.
- If you fear visiting the dentist, don’t share your feelings with your child. This could scare them.
- Read books or watch videos together with your child about dental visits. Look for books or videos that show dental visits in a positive way. Don’t read books or show videos that use words like hurt, pain, shot, or drill. Ask a children’s librarian, dentist, dental hygienist, child care provider, or teacher for recommendations.
- Let your child bring their favorite toy or blanket to the dental clinic.
- Ask one of the dental team members if your child will receive a small toy or new toothbrush at the end of their visit. Share this with your child.
Resource Type: Publication
National Centers: Health, Behavioral Health, and Safety
Series: Healthy Habits for Happy Smiles
Last Updated: November 9, 2022