Many children have a fear of the dentist. Helping your child overcome anxiety surrounding the dentist and dental visits is the first step to giving them a lifetime of healthy teeth. As we all know, visiting the dentist regularly is the foundation of good oral health. By teaching your child that the dentist’s office is nothing to be afraid of, you are setting them up for success. Here are some tips to make visits to the dentist a little easier for both parent and child.

1.)    Start them young. The American Dental Association recommends that a child visit the dentist for the first time either when their first tooth erupts or by their first birthday.

2.)    Keep it simple by giving your child ONLY the information the child needs for that appointment. The first appointment will be a teeth cleaning, so there is no need to try to explain cavities or fillings. Keep a positive attitude when explaining.

3.)    Play pretend to help your child get familiar with the dentist’s office. Count their teeth and show them how the dentist will look in their mouth. The child can also use a toothbrush to brush a doll or stuffed animal to help them get comfortable for their own visit.

4.)    It is perfectly normal for your child to be a little resistant to a dental exam by a stranger. Wiggling and whining are completely normal and they are behaviors that our staff are well-trained to work with. Let us guide you and your child through the visit.

5.)    Explain that visiting the dentist is not a choice. Try explaining that the dentist takes care of our teeth to help them be strong and healthy so we can eat our favorite foods and smile at people we love.

And always remember that we are here to help!. Feel free to reach out with questions on how to make your little one more comfortable with us!

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