4 Tips to Help Your Kids Beat Their Fear of the Dentist

4 Tips to Help Your Kids Beat Their Fear of the Dentist

Getting your kids to go to the dentist can be just as hard as pulling teeth. Here are some tips to help them conquer their fear of the dentist once and for all.

Do your children suffer from a fear of the dentist?

It's understandable that children get scared of dental procedures. It's a widespread problem, but it's not inevitable.

Many things play into the presence of this fear. How you relate to the topic and what you teach your kids can play a huge role. With the right methods, you can take the fear away.

You're always conditioning your children. Make sure that the conditioning is positive and not negative, and things will go well.

These four tips help set your kids up for an easy time with the dentist, instead of a tough one.

1. Get a Headstart Against Fear of the Dentist

It's easier if you start earlier. If you establish regular visits to the dentist when the child is little, they're less likely to develop the fear.

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends bringing your child in for the first time no more than 6 months after their first baby tooth appears, or no later than your child's first birthday.

It's beneficial for your kids' oral health, and it makes them familiar with dentists and their clinics.

Another bonus is being able to establish a diagnosis early on. This will reduce the need for scary, invasive procedures.

2. Lead by Example

You may be passing down a fear of the dentist to your child subconsciously. If they hear your averse feelings, it will rub off on them.

Do your best to portray dentistry in a positive light.

Don't tell them horror stories from your past dentist appointments. It won't convince them of how much better off they are. It will create more fear.

Brush and floss every day, and tell your children about the importance of dental health. Create a positive association.

3. Reinforce a Positive Perspective

There are many ways to create positive associations instead of negative ones.

Certain books for kids can help with this. Colorful pictures and fun, simple stories will give your child a better idea of going to the dentist.

When the characters your kids like put a positive spin on dentist appointments, it can reinforce positive expectations.

Many popular children's book series have a story about the dentist. Favorites like the Berenstain Bears and Dora the Explorer are good examples.

When you talk about the dentist, don't use words like "painful," "hurt," or "scary."

Even if you say "There's nothing to be afraid of. This won't hurt." The words that stand out are "afraid" and "hurt." This will only create anxiety.

Avoid all such words. No talk about needles and drills. If you want more tips, ask your pediatric dentist for advice on comforting vocabulary at the next appointment.

Don't try to fool your kid or tell lies like "they will not do anything today." If you break their trust, your kids will feel even worse about both the dentist and their parents.

4. Promote Great Oral Health

Always stress how important good oral health is. Ensure that your kids develop good dental habits. Reinforce a good association when you explain how the dentist will help them keep strong, healthy teeth.

If they understand it's a good and necessary thing, there won't be much fear of the dentist.

Parenting is an important piece of the puzzle.


Going to the dentist can be very scary to a child, but it doesn't have to be.

Creating and reinforcing a positive idea of going to the dentist is the most important factor.

We understand that a dentist appointment can seem scary to your child. We aim to make all patients feel comfortable in the dentist's chair. Make your appointment here.

If you have more questions, contact us.

Categories: pediatric dentist

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