5 Tips to Help Kids Overcome Fear of Dentists

1. Start early

Early visits to the dentist will help your child become familiar with the dental experience and learn that dentists are safe, important, and even fun. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends taking your child to see a dentist when his or her first tooth erupts, or by the first birthday.

At Superior Dental Health, we suggest it might be best parents bring their children in for a reassuring introductory visit, which is designed to ease them into regular dental exams.

2. Praise and Reward Your Child for Being Brave

You can encourage your child and diminish his or her fear by offering praise or rewards after a successful routine visit with our Mooresville pediatric dentist. The gesture will prep your young one to stand firm for more involved future procedures if necessary.

3. Don’t teach fear of dentists

Unknowingly, parents often contribute to children’s fear of dentists by expressing their own concerns. If you experience anxiety about going to the dentist yourself, remember that this is an acquired fear.

Many people share this anxiety, but you can break the cycle by not sharing contrary ideas about the dentist with your child, and avoiding words like “pain” and “hurt.”

Superior Dental Health treats adults as well as children, so you are welcome to discuss any of your own fears with our doctor and staff. We will be happy to address your concerns and help you overcome past unpleasant experiences.

4. Have a backup plan – It’s normal for young children to be fussy, so it’s always a good idea for the parents to meet the dental hygienist and dentist before the visit and share some information about the child. Tell them about brothers and sisters, their new puppy or detail about their favorite Disney character. This way if there is a fussy moment, your dentist can talk about things your little one can relate to. Just changing their mindset for one moment can stop the tears and eliminate anxiety.

5. Stay with your child

When your child sits in the dental chair for the first time, he or she may experience fear no matter how well you’ve prepared for the exam. You can help your child stay calm and confident by staying nearby.

Superior Dental Health welcomes parents to stay with their children during checkups. This is a great way to help kids overcome the fear of dentists, and gradually feel comfortable going through checkups on their own.

Learn more about your dentist

To learn more about how to help kids overcome the fear of dentists, schedule a visit with Superior Dental Health by calling one of our offices today.

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