Is your child anxious about going to the dentist? Many kids feel uncomfortable at the dentist, whether it’s their first appointment or they’ve had difficult experiences before. As a parent, you play a big role in influencing your child’s view of the dentist. With the right preparation and reassurance, you can help take the anxiety out of dentist visits. We’re sharing ways you can make the dentist stress-free for your child:

  1. Explain What Happens

Start by explaining what will happen at a check-up using simple terms. Review what your child can expect, such as counting teeth, looking for cavities, and taking any necessary X-rays. Make it clear to your child that you will stay with them, and you’ll be right there holding their hand the whole time. Avoid using scary language and only give as much detail as they can handle based on their age. 

  1. Read children’s books and watch videos about positive dental experiences. 

One way your child can become familiar with the dentist is by reading books or watching shows about it. For example, Daniel Tiger and Elmo model going to the dentist in kid-friendly episodes. Seeing relatable characters can help ease their fears about the unknown. 

  1. Bring your child to your own dentist appointments. 

You may consider taking your child with you at their next appointment. It helps them get familiar with the environment ahead of time. The sights, sounds, and smells will become less foreign and scary if experienced beforehand. Just seeing you calmly get your teeth cleaned helps demystify the process. 

  1. Plan a special reward after. 

Give your child something positive to look forward to after the appointment, such as planning a special treat for your child or visiting one of their favorite places, like the park. This incentive provides motivation to get through the visit. We also help encourage your child to enjoy their appointment by designing our waiting room to be kid-friendly and taking our time with them.

  1. Address any past negative experiences honestly. 

If you sense a lingering fear in your child due to a prior dentist trip, don’t dismiss their concerns. Discuss what happened and explain how this visit will be better. Your own calm attitude can help establish their comfort. If you act anxious, your child will pick up on that apprehension. Your reassuring presence helps your little one build courage. 

With preparation and patience, you can make the dentist stress-free for your child. The earlier you help your child overcome worries, the more positive their lifetime experiences will be.

If your child needs a checkup, call Copperfield Dentistry in Houston, TX today at 281-643-0316 or schedule online to make your appointment. We see patients as young as 3 years old.