Ah, the dentist. So many clichés, so many weird fears that we’ve all created over the years. Why is it that dentists are seen with so my negativity? Is it the apparent 12-inch needles, the dark and dank waiting rooms, or the fact a copy of Woman’s Own from 2003 is the only thing to keep kids entertained before their appointment?
I’m ridiculously grateful to the free dental care our children get at our local surgery, but having recently visited Happy Kids Dental in Chelsea, I’ve seen the possibilities of paediatric dentist practices in a whole new light.
Happy Kids Dental is bright, fun and full of entertaining amusements to keep kids happy and relaxed before their turn in the dentist’s chair. In the Chelsea practice, the waiting room has apparatus to keep toddlers amused (there can’t be many dentist surgeries in the world with a pirate’s ship for youngsters to climb and slide down), games consoles for older kids and coffee and refreshments for parents. My two instantly forgot they were even in a dentist surgery – it couldn’t have been further from what they’re used to.
Upon being called for our appointment, we were met by a charming dentist, who led us upstairs and showed us around. The waiting room upstairs is again, bright and fun, this time with the addition of a flat-screen and Netflix. Down the corridor were large models of teeth so the kids could practice their brushing techniques whilst timed against a 2-minute (the recommended time for kids to brush) hourglass. But the pretend teeth weren’t just any old yellowing models you might have seen in GCSE Science, nope, these teeth were in the mouths of a shark, a hippo and other fun toothy creatures!
The actual appointment was stress-free (much of this was because there was a TV on the ceiling for the kids to watch whilst their teeth were examined) and I’m pleased to say both Edie’s and Arlo’s teeth were in good condition. Everything was explained to me in simple terms with a short list of practical steps that could be taken to further improve the health of their teeth.
Before arriving, I promised the kids they’d each receive a sticker for getting their teeth checked, much like I did back in the day, but much to our surprise, there weren’t stickers… there were gold coins instead which could be slotted into a fun contraption before dispensing some well-earned treasure. To the kids delight, they both left with a small toy.
I can’t recommend Happy Kids Dental enough. If you’d like to see for yourself, there’s a chance to win a year’s membership at either their Marylebone or Chelsea sites over on my Instagram feed. So don’t DECAY, head over there now.