6 Tips to Minimize Your Child’s Dental Anxiety

Some children love visiting the dentist, while others don’t. If you have a child who isn’t the biggest fan of going to the dentist don’t force them into a dentist seat because it will only make them more anxious and scared at their next appointment.

Here are 6 helpful tips on how to minimize your child’s dental anxiety:

  1. Start Dental Visits While They’re Young

It is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) that children should see a pediatric dentist as soon as their first tooth appears, or no later than their first birthday. This will help promote good oral health habits and establish a positive relationship and trust with their dental office.

  1. Read Dental Storybooks to Your Children

One of the best ways to make your child comfortable with going to the dentist is to assure them that it is a safe and fun place to be at. Reading them a dental visit storybook for children will help them understand what to expect. The storybook should contain vivid illustrations, easy to understand language and a positive dental experience from the main character of the book.

The following are recommended dental storybooks that will educate your child about how going to the dentist and protecting their teeth can be fun:

  • Just Going to the Dentist, Mercer Mayer (1990)
  • The Berenstain Bears Visit the Dentist, Stan and Jan Berenstain (1981)
  • No More Gunk, Donna J. Shepherd (2008)
  1. Play “Dentist” at Home

This is a fun, interactive way to educate your child about the dentist. It’s easy to set up a pretend dental visit in your home; all you need is a chair, mirror, toothbrush, patient, and dentist. In this roleplaying activity, the parent will be the dentist and the child will be the patient. As the parent, you will be able to make your child feel more comfortable about their dental experience by showing them how to clean and count their teeth. Your child can also practice on their dolls, action figures, or stuffed animals.

  1. Lead by Example

By teaching your children the importance of oral hygiene, you’re making an investment in their overall health and confidence. You’ll want to set expectations on what maintaining healthy, strong teeth means such as brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and visiting the dentist regularly.

Most importantly, you’ll have to lead by example. If they see that you’re happy and comfortable when taking care of your teeth at home and going to the dentist for your regular visit, they will do the same. So, lead the way and they will follow.

  1. Communicate, But Keep It Simple

Telling your child about a dental appointment at the last minute can increase stress and anxiety. Be sure to give them enough time to prepare themselves for the visit. Also, ask your child if they have any questions prior to the appointment and answer them with simplicity and honesty. Remind them that dentists are friendly doctors for their teeth, and that they are here to help keep your smile healthy, strong and beautiful.

  1. Go to a Family Dentist

Here at Advanced Children’s Dentistry, your Garden City Pediatric Dentist, we are trained and experienced in taking care of children and ensuring that they have a positive dental experience. We know that the small details matter so we try our best to make our office a fun and safe place for children. We offer games in our waiting room, stuffed animals for comfort, and a treasure chest filled with prizes for children to choose from after their appointment.



At Advanced Children’s Dentistry, we want to make sure your child is well-educated on their oral health. Call us today at (516) 758 – KIDS or schedule online now to reserve your child’s dental care appointment.

Advanced Children’s Dentistry is proud to serve the surrounding cities: Mineola, Hempstead, West Hempstead, Franklin Square, Uniondale, New Hyde Park, Westbury, North New Hyde Park, Roosevelt, North Merrick, Roslyn, Carle Place, Williston Park, Old Westbury, Albertson, East Meadow, Garden City Park, Floral Park, East Garden City and many more.

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