Kids and the Dentist: 4 Tips to Keep Them Calm

A visit to the dentist for your child can involve screams, tears, anxiety, or all of the above. For a child, the dentist’s office is a place with noisy tools and strangers looking in your mouth. As a parent, you can do things to make dental visits as painless as possible. Going to the dentist can even be a fun experience. Read these tips to help keep your child calm when visiting the dentist.

1 ) Read Books About Visiting the Dentist

There are storybooks written about almost every experience a child can have, including going to the dentist. Storybooks use language that your child understand and vibrant pictures that’ll keep your child’s attention. Your child can identify with the fear that the main character may have. The positive experience that the main character ends up having can ease your child’s fears.

Popular Dental Storybooks:

  • The Berenstain Bears Visit the Dentist by Stan and Jan Berenstain
  • Noah’s Visit to the Dentist by Jupiter Kids
  • Ben Goes to the Dentist by Keith Harvey

2 ) Visit the Dentist at a Young Age

The sooner your children can become familiar with the dentist, the better. Dentists recommend that children should have their first visit as soon as their first tooth appears and no later than their first birthday. Early dental visits are good for a child’s oral health, but it will also give them a chance to feel comfortable around the dentist.

3 ) Play “Dentist” Before the Visit

Before going to a dental appointment, play “dentist” with your kid. Pretend to be the dentist and show your child what the doctor will do. Then, switch roles and show your child how a patient should act. This can also be an opportunity for your child to learn how to clean and count teeth. Use things around your house like a chair, mirror, and toothbrush to make the experience realistic.

4 ) Explain, but Don’t Make It Complicated

When your child has a dental appointment, don’t wait until the last minute to tell them. Let them know about the appointment well in advance to decrease anxiety and fear. Knowing about the appointment in advance will allow your kid to mentally prepare for the visit. Be sure to ask your child if they have any questions. Simply explain why he or she is going to the dentist and what the dentist will do. For example, if your son asks why he has to go to the dentist, say “to check your smile and count your teeth.” Reassure them that the dentist will help keep their teeth healthy. Use words like “clean” and “strong” in your explanations.

Your Child Will Be Taken Care of at Barganier and LeCroy, DMD

Your child might have anxiety about visiting the dentist, but you shouldn’t. Your kid is in great hands at Barganier and LeCroy, DMD. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.