Blog - February 2012

My top ten tips for dental hygienists and therapists to help children with their oral health:

 

 1. Tone of voice- pacing needs to be slower and very friendly tone. Maybe a more adult steering/ guiding tone if needed- soft/ loud commands.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 2. Tell- Show- Do Behavioural model (See American Paediatric Dental Association for more info on this.)

 3. Start procedure without delay- don't waste time.

 4. Modelling- use a sibling/ family member to demonstrate on if patient is nervous.

 5. Empower the patient through positive feedback and hand controls eg stop/ start to gain control.

 6. Disclosing games- who can get the best score- use between siblings or school class or brushing club. Get children to use the mirror and colour in on a chart where the dye is distributed in pairs.

 7. Play dental dressing up with children and their siblings - use plastic mouth mirrors and get them to count the teeth they can see.

 8. If children are having trouble brushing - get them to brush to a favourite song till the end.

 9. Make sure the waiting room facilities are child friendly with books and age appropriate games and TV. Make sure dental smells are masked with room fresheners/ lavender oil as a relaxant.

 10. Send a pre visit letter to mum and dad , explain what will happen. Enclose a mouth mirror and get them to play dentists and get the child to play opening wide and counting the teeth. Then the treatment and the experience will follow on nicely.