8 Tips to Help Kids Overcome Fear of Dentists

Many adults have fears of dentists, so it’s natural to expect your kids to feel the same way. However, there are some tips you can use to help your child overcome that fear.

  1. Talk to Them About the Dentist: Keeping them prepared for what’s to come helps them think positively about it before, making the experience all the less frightening.
  2. Play Out a Pretend Dentist Visit: Let your child experience the visit with you before they experience it with the real dentist.
  3. Emphasize the Importance of Brushing: Encouraging strong, healthy teeth can help your child develop a sense of pride in their teeth that just might lead them to show off their pearly whites with ease.
  4. Plan Fun Afterward: Let your child know that there is something fun you are going to do together after their dentist visit, whether that’s going to a movie, a park, or even shopping for toys!
  5. Create Positive Associations: Avoid bribes that suggest the dentist is an upsetting place to be, and forget any of your personal experiences at the dentist. Instead, talk about how nice your teeth feel after your visit and how happy it makes you when you both have a healthy mouth.
  6. Bring a Comfort Object: Whether your child sleeps with a teddy bear or a special blanket, find whatever gives them comfort and allow them to bring it with them to the dentist’s office.
  7. Get to the Office Early: Arriving a few minutes early to your child’s exam can help show them there is nothing to be scared of at the dentist.
  8. Be Prepared for Fussing: Not every child can be made to feel comfortable at the dentist’s office, and following the advice of your child’s dentist is often the best course of action when your child starts to fuss. After all, they have likely seen more children in exam chairs than the average parent.