Dr Mark HassedI was reminded yesterday, yet again, how difficult and stressful children can be to see as dental patients.

A practice I visited had a child who was screaming, crying and demanding all prior to even being examined.

My experience over the past 30 years has been that 4 out of 5 children are reasonable dental patients but the 5th one makes you regret you ever became  a dentist.

The 5th one leaves your schedule in shambles, your office in total disarray and both you and the team exhausted and irritable.

Difficult children are like difficult root fillings – best left to specialists.

Don't be a hero. If you feel that you must see children (and nothing at all says you have to) then don't persist. The instant they start to act up, sit the chair up and refer them.

Your team will thank you and so will your stomach lining.

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