Ask a Dentist

May 29, 2021

Q: What are some tips to help children who are afraid of the dentist?

A child shades their eyes as they smile at the camera with a few missing teeth.

We're often asked for our best tips to help keep your child calm when they come in for a check-up.

It’s important for your child to visit the dentist regularly so we can monitor the growth of their teeth, spot any irregularities or misalignment and help prevent cavities and other oral health issues like gum disease.

We understand that it can be hard to convince some children that visiting the dentist is good for them, but at Dental Image Therapy Centres your comfort is our priority - and that includes our littlest patients.

Some tips we like to recommend are:

1. Visit the dentist when their first tooth appears OR by their first birthday. This first visit may be just a short introduction to the office, allowing the child time to feel comfortable and become familiar with us.

This will allow the dental team an opportunity to gauge when you should book subsequent visits.

Making your child’s first dentist visit at a young age will help create familiarity and routine. This also gives our dentists and hygienists a good opportunity to monitor your child’s oral health early on and to help you guide your child through brushing and flossing their teeth. This tip helps to create healthy smiles for life!

Watch the following video for more information about your child’s first dental appointment:

2. Avoid talking about the ‘scary’ things you hear about the dentist. Talking about drills, pain, or teeth being pulled could cause more anxiety and cause your child to fuss. Instead we recommend that you reinforce the importance of good oral health.

3. Avoid bribery. Telling your child you will reward them with a treat if they behave during their appointment (or just for making it to the chair) only reinforces the idea that visiting the dentist is a bad thing. Instead talk to your child after their appointment about how good it feels to have clean teeth and a shining smile.

For more information about children’s dental visits, watch the video below:

Schedule an appointment for you and your child today at our St. Vital and Garden City locations.

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