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How To Prevent Dental Anxiety in Children

It’s normal for children and adults to feel fear and stress at their dentist appointments.
Everything is new and unknown to them, and the medical setting can be a bit overwhelming.
Preventing their dental anxiety starts by bringing them to the dentist at an early age so they can
get used to teeth cleanings and exams. There are other ways to help your child cope with their
dental anxiety, and understanding the importance of going to the dentist can help prevent future
dental issues. Learn below how to avoid dental anxiety in children so you can teach your child
the importance of good oral health!

Three Reasons for Dental Anxiety in Children

There are many reasons for dental anxiety in children. To help your child overcome their fear, it’s
important first to know where it comes from.

Fear Of Pain

Fear of pain is one of the most common reasons children are anxious about the dentist. The
dentist isn’t always a painful experience compared to what children hear about from adults or
other children’s scary dental moments. Pain associated with going to the dentist has a bad
reputation and can make your child fearful their appointment will hurt. Pediatric dentists are
specifically trained to help your child feel comfortable during their entire treatment. Alleviating
pain and worry from start to finish is what they are committed to doing for your child.

Fear Of Having No Control

Many children fear feeling trapped in a dental chair and not knowing what will happen during
their procedure. Having no control can be a scary thought for not only children but adults too.
Having tools in their mouth can cause them to be afraid of not being able to control or
communicate how they are feeling. This can be very overwhelming and cause them to cry or
become restless during their appointment, making them even more anxious for the next one.
Pediatric dentists can pause between sections of the mouth and communicate with your child to
see how they are doing. This will not only give them a break but keep them comfortable and
relaxed throughout.

Fear Of The Unknown

When a child goes to the dentist, they fear what will happen. Not knowing something can be
scary, especially for children at a young age who are not always aware of what’s happening.
Many children may fear having a cavity or what things will feel like in their mouths. Sometimes it
may even be hard to pinpoint what they are afraid of. They may be anxious because they do not
know why they need a procedure or what it will do to them. Being honest and open with your
child will help them feel they are aware of their appointment.

How To Alleviate Dental Anxiety & Make Your

Child Comfortable

Every parent wants to alleviate the stress and anxiety that comes from their child’s dentist
appointment. There are many ways to make your child more comfortable at their next dentist
appointment. Discover below how to prevent dental anxiety in your child and teach them how to
cope before their appointments.

Bring a comfort item: Many children have a favorite toy or blanket that makes them feel
safe and comfortable. This item may help them feel more relaxed during their dental

Provide a distraction: Keeping your child distracted while in a medical setting can help
keep them feel more relaxed while waiting for their appointment. Letting them play on
your phone or tablet or listen to music in the waiting room will distract them from where
they are. Some dental offices have games for children to enjoy as well.

Use positive reinforcement: Teaching your child, positive reinforcement will make them
feel brave and motivated. Rewarding them after their visit will make them feel confident
to take on the appointment to seek the reward. Letting them have a treat, play video
games, or pick a place for lunch will soon teach them that going to the dentist isn’t as
bad as it seems.

Be honest and communicate: Communicating with your child and the dental staff is the
best way to help your child cope with their anxiety. Let the dental team know your child is
nervous and let your child know that you will be there by their side the whole time. Being
honest with them will help them feel comfortable and build trust.

Do not delay dental care: Avoiding your child’s dental appointments because of their
anxiety is never the answer. Putting off an appointment will put them at risk of developing
worse dental problems and requiring more extensive treatments later on.

Make An Appointment With A Friendly & Welcoming

Pediatric Dentist in Bedford, NH

At Lindner Dental Associates, we understand your child may be nervous or restless in our
chairs. Our team of board-certified pediatric dentists are committed to providing a comfortable
and welcoming environment that helps take their minds off being at the dentist. Our pediatric
dentists are gentle, patient, and committed to teaching your little one the importance of clean
teeth and great oral care. Learn more about our pediatric dental services in Bedford, NH, and
contact us to make an appointment!