Frustrated! 6 year old will NOT allow exams!

  1. My daughter has had a life long issue with any type of physical exam. Nothing has ever happened "out of the norm" when she was younger (she does still remember getting pre-K vaccines and I keep telling her she is not due for any!) When she was smaller (preschool age) there are certain ways that we could get her to allow SOME of a physical exam (suckers, her holding the stethescope, etc.) and the rest has been the hold-em-down-and-get-it-done-quick (ie: looking in ears)
    As a parent and a nurse I understand both sides...but there has GOT to be a point where the exam is by the childs own will....only my daughter is now 6 years old and still won't let anyone get NEAR her (except me on occasion)
    We just went through an hour and a half "ordeal" of screaming and crying and tantrum fits to get her hair trimmed by one of our good friends! I was so embarrassed! She finally settled down and allowed the haircut while sitting on my lap. Whew. Now that is done for awhile.
    She has not had a good physical exam in several years and has NEVER allowed the dentist to come in the room, let alone look inside her mouth.
    I have given her my assessment ( I do NI, PI and Peds ) and have found nothing of concern - she is luckily a healthy child. But we really need to establish a relationship with a physician if she ever becomes ill or worse!

    My thoughts are: perhaps a peds dentist could give her a mild sedation before the exam (gas, perhaps?) but I doubt any Doctor is going to give her anything if they have never seen her before....

    Anyone experience this, or have any suggestions?? She is very smart, good in school and very social with lots of friends. I have made appointments and had to leave, apologizing and still paying cash for the office visit because she won't let anyone go near her....

    Jenny
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    About justjenny

    Joined: Dec '03; Posts: 275; Likes: 16
    Specialty: NICU- now learning OR!

    4 Comments

  3. by   mommy2boys
    My boys go to an pediatic dentist and it seems to help a little. Our doc has tv over the exam chairs so the kids can watch them. When my oldest bite his hand (very hard) the doctor was very calm about it and he seemed to relate to him better than my dentist. With my youngest the I held him (more like layed on him) while the doctor did a quick check.

    Sometimes kids wont stop fighting the doctors and you just have to hold on to them with all you might. Trust me, doctors see patients like this all the time (not all of them are children). Just try to prepare her as much as you can (explain what they will do before she goes in) and just let her screem. IF all else fails, you could bribe her with a trip to the toy store if she sits still long enough to do the exam.

    Good luck
    Erin
  4. by   landonsles
    I worked in a dental office for many years, and one thing I noticed was that kids picked up on the fears of the parents and did MUCH better if they went in to the exam room by themselves. Even my own son, who has known our dentist and hygienist since birth, would pitch fits about getting xrays/exams until I quit going to the back with him.
    Good luck!
    Last edit by landonsles on Apr 25, '07 : Reason: Added something
  5. by   NotReady4PrimeTime
    Quote from landonsles
    I worked in a dental office for many years, and one thing I noticed was that kids picked up on the fears of the parents and did MUCH better if they went in to the exam room by themselves. Even my own son, who has known our dentist and hygienist since birth, would pitch fits about getting xrays/exams until I quit going to the back with him.
    Good luck!
    I concur! Most kids are much better behaved if Mommy isn't in the room.
  6. by   llg
    Perhaps letting your child watch you and other members of your family go to the dentist, get their hair cut, etc. would help. Also, "playing beauty parlor" as a part of playing "dress up" might help. Integrate these types of activities into your life (and hers) so that they seem routine and not a big deal. Start with the definitely painless and more fun things (like playing beauty parlor and doing her nails and hair etc.) and work "up" from there.

    You also might want to talk with a counselor of some sort, your pediatrician, a child psychologist, a child-life specialist, etc. who might be able to assess your child's behavior and help you develop a plan to deal with it. There might be some deeper issues at work that need to be addressed.

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