If you have an autistic child you already know the importance of preparing your child for new things. Most autistic children thrive on patterns and routine. Familiar places and familiar people are where they do best! Here at Smile Reef we typically only see your child a couple times a year. We understand that only seeing us so infrequently does not help your child feel at ease with us. We have some tips for how you can prepare your autistic child for their next office visit that we hope will put both you and your child more at ease.
Choose a Pediatric Dentist Specializing in Autism
The best thing that you can do for your autistic child is make sure that you are taking them to a dentist that works with special needs children. Since you are here on our website, we hope that you know already that Smile Reef is well trained in working with special needs children. If you do not know this, let us put your mind at ease. Dr. Jensen and the rest of the staff will take amazing care of your child during their visit. Once you know you have the right dentist you will want to start introducing your child to the idea of their upcoming visit to see us here at Smile Reef. One idea that many of our patients find helpful is to print out a picture of Dr. Jensen and show it to your child. We have pictures of Dr. Jensen on our website that will help you with this. If your child knows who they are coming to see it will help them feel less anxiety about the visit.
Give Autistic Child Information About their Dental Visit
Next you will want to help your child prepare for what will happen during the appointment. Walk them through what will happen at each part of their appointment. If you need a list of what will happen at their appointment give us a call and we can walk you through the main parts of the appointment. When your child knows what to expect it can help lower their anxiety about the appointment.
Social Stories of Dental Office for Children with Autism
Over the years we have found that many times the tools we use during your child’s appointment are a point of concern for autistic children. You may want to consider buying or borrowing some basic dental instruments. Letting your child see, touch, and interact with the tools that we will be using on their teeth to help make them seem less scary on the day of the appointment.
Frequently creating a social story helps autistic children prepare for new experiences. You can create a social story for the upcoming trip to the dentist. If you would like to come in and take pictures of our office to help you create this social story please give us a call. We would be happy to have you come in and take pictures of our office to use.
Special Needs Pediatric Dentistry
We hope that these tips help you prepare your autistic child for their next trip the dentist. We want their experience to go as smoothly as possible. Smile Reef is here to help you in any way. Contact us to schedule your next appointment today!