How to Ease Your Child’s Fear of the Dentist

  • By Tonya Davis
  • 27 Sep, 2017
Did you know that over 29% of adults are so scared of the dentist that they delay treatment and suffer from oral health problems? If you don't want your child to become part of the statistics, you need to give them the right messages about the dentist from the time they are young.

To ensure your little one doesn't develop a dental phobia, it's important to set a good example, portray dentist's visits as a positive thing and choose the right dentist. Read on for detailed advice on how to keep your child from getting scared at their next appointment.

Read Positive Stories About the Dentist 

Young children often fear the unknown, so reading stories can give them a clear idea of what they can expect to happen at the dentist. Choose positive, age-appropriate books that show dental appointments as something fun rather than scary.

If your child is a little older and is already showing signs of fear, try reading them a book about another child who overcomes their phobia. Encourage them to make comparisons and think about ways to feel less scared, for example, having mummy or daddy hold their hand while they sit in the chair.

Look at Pictures of the Dentist's Office 

If it's your child's first visit to the dentist or their first time at a new practice, showing them some pictures and talking them through what's going to happen can help them feel more prepared and less anxious.

You could show a picture of the outside of the building, the waiting room with toys for them to play with and the exam room. Let them know that you'll be with them every step of the way by saying things like We'll walk down to the exam room together.

Play a Dentist Role-Playing Game

If your child is worried or confused about what's going to happen during their check-up, buying a toy dentist's kit and playing with it together is a fun way to teach them.

Choose a toy or stuffed animal with a large mouth, and then show your child how the dentist will look inside their mouth using a mirror, check their teeth, ask them to use mouthwash and shine a torch inside their mouth. Let them ask lots of questions, and give them a turn playing the role of the dentist.

Set a Positive Example

Many phobias are passed on from parents to children, so it's important to set a positive example for your child, even if you're feeling a little nervous yourself.

If you're both attending appointments on the same day, talk about how you're looking forward to the visit. Avoid saying things like I hate going to the dentist, or I hope this doesn't hurt. Your child can easily pick up on these cues and start to develop their own fears.

Stay in the Room

Most dentists are more than happy for you to stay in the room during your child's appointment, and many will offer to see you one after the other. Going first is a great way to set a good example and show your child how to behave in the chair. If your child is especially nervous, you could hold their hand during the checkup.

Keep talking and offering positive reinforcement by saying things like  You're so grown up sitting nicely in the dentist's chair. I'm so proud of you.

Choose a Dentist with Experience Treating Children

Children often feel much more at ease with a dentist who's experienced in treating young patients. Choose a  family dentist  who understands that your child might be scared and who will be patient and understanding with them.

Are you worried about your child developing a dental phobia? Follow this advice, and the risk of them developing a fear will be much lower, meaning they'll be able to access the right dental care for the rest of their lives.

By Tonya Davis 16 Jan, 2018
You've been to the dentist enough to know the basics — you're in and out after a quick cleaning, flossing and X-ray scan. But this time there was something different. Your dentist took a quick look at your gums, frowned and recommended that you get a surgery called a frenectomy sooner than later.

If you're like most people, you probably haven't ever heard of a frenectomy, and you're understandably a little frightened and confused by the recommendation. But frenectomies are actually minor surgeries that can go a long way towards preserving your teeth for decades to come.

Whether your dentist referred you to a gum specialist or has the know-how to perform a small frenectomy in-house, keep reading. We'll tell you what you can expect from this minor procedure.
By Tonya Davis 18 Dec, 2017
In toddlers and young children, a loose milk tooth usually heralds the arrival of its permanent replacement. This is a time of discovery, a time to celebrate. Loose milk teeth eventually fall out, as nature intended, and are replaced with permanent teeth. However, there is nothing natural about loose teeth in adults. A loose tooth is an indicator that something is wrong.

Teeth are held in place, within their sockets, by the periodontal ligament. These web-like tissue fibres cover the roots of teeth and anchor them to the jawbone. Gum tissue also helps to hold teeth in place. If teeth are loose then, there is an underlying issue that is affecting those tissues.
By Tonya Davis 06 Nov, 2017
Teeth whitening has come a long way over the last few thousand years. The ancient Egyptians whitened their teeth with ground pumice stone and wine vinegar 4,000 years ago. Later, the Romans decided that urine was their whitening agent of choice! It wasn't until the 1960s that peroxide, which is used to whiten teeth today, was used to whiten teeth.

Hydrogen and carbamide peroxide, the two main components of teeth whitening, can work wonders with stained teeth. What they cannot do, however, is whiten dental bridges or in fact any other type of dental restoration. Whitening agents simply cannot penetrate these materials in the same way they can natural teeth.

If your bridge needs to be whitened, you may be out of luck. However, if you get a bridge that is whiter than your natural teeth, you may be able to solve the problem by whitening your teeth to match. Learn more about your options below.
By Tonya Davis 27 Sep, 2017
Did you know that over 29% of adults are so scared of the dentist that they delay treatment and suffer from oral health problems? If you don't want your child to become part of the statistics, you need to give them the right messages about the dentist from the time they are young.

To ensure your little one doesn't develop a dental phobia, it's important to set a good example, portray dentist's visits as a positive thing and choose the right dentist. Read on for detailed advice on how to keep your child from getting scared at their next appointment.
By Tyler Vogelsberg 05 Sep, 2017
If you have recently noticed that your teeth are translucent to some degree, you may understandably be worried about what this indicates in regards to your oral health. Translucent teeth, however, are not always a sign that something is wrong. In fact, there are several reasons for this phenomenon, each of which will be explained below.
By Tyler Vogelsberg 01 Aug, 2017
When you think about losing teeth, you may picture a gap-toothed grin on a wide-eyed child who's talking about the tooth fairy. For children, tooth loss allows for the permanent teeth to erupt properly.

But many adults experience tooth loss as well. As an adult contemplating tooth extraction, you may feel nervous or even embarrassed, so it's
important to understand the causes of adult tooth loss, possible prevention and common  types of tooth replacement .

In this blog, we list four facts about tooth extraction that can help you feel more prepared for this procedure.
By Tonya Davis 29 Jun, 2017
In general, the typical shade of healthy teeth is an off-white hue with slight undertones of brown, yellow or grey. However, many people find that their teeth are much darker than off-white. If you're one of these people, you may be wondering why your teeth aren't as bright as everyone else's and what you can do about it.

Browning and yellowing teeth have a variety of possible causes. One of the most well-known is aging, but what about discolouration that happens before you reach your senior years? If you're an adult with stained teeth, there are two broad categories of tooth discolouration you should look to: extrinsic and intrinsic.

Both can be remedied in different ways, but the right solution will depend on which of these discolouration types is affecting you.
By Tonya Davis 28 Mar, 2017
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