Reinforcement Throughout the Appointment

Studies have shown that behaviors that are rewarded will increase in frequency.15 Throughout the dental procedure, the practitioner can provide reinforcement in many ways:23

  • Verbal positive reinforcement in term of praise can be repeated throughout the procedure.
  • A behavioral contract (written or verbal) can be made between the practitioner and the patient: When you ... then you will ...
  • Tangible rewards (stickers, pretend tattoos, baseball cards, tokens, etc.) can be useful in obtaining compliance.