Make the Dentist Trip Less Scary for Kids

Feburary 10 2023 by Mills Haven Dental

Make the Dentist Trip Less Scary for Kids - Mills Haven Dental

Visiting the dentist can be an intimidating experience for children, and it’s not uncommon for them to feel anxious or scared. Fortunately, there are several things that parents can do to help reduce their child’s fear of the dentist, including:

  1. encouraging open communication;
  2. choosing a pediatric dentist;
  3. distracting your child;
  4. rewarding your child; and
  5. establishing good habits beforehand.

Let’s deep dive into each of these tips that will make your next visit to the dentist more enjoyable for everyone involved. 

Encourage Open Communication

One of the best ways to overcome a fear of the dentist is by talking openly about it. Encourage your child to share their feelings and ask questions in an effort to understand what they are feeling and why. Once you have identified the source of their anxiety, you can work together to come up with strategies that will help reduce it. 

Choose a Pediatric Dentist

When selecting a dentist, consider finding one who specializes in pediatric dentistry. A pediatric dentist has additional training and experience in dealing with children, so they know how to make them feel comfortable and relaxed during their visit. Plus, many pediatric offices are designed specifically for kids, which can help put them more at ease during dental procedures. 

Distract Your Child

If your child is still feeling anxious even after taking these steps, try distracting them during their appointment. Bring along a favorite toy or book that they can focus on while getting checked out by the dentist. This will help them stay engaged without having time to worry about what might happen next. Additionally, some dentists offer movies or video games as part of their waiting room entertainment options – these can also be great tools for keeping kids distracted when necessary!

Reward Your Kiddo

After the appointment, reward your child for being brave. This could be something like a small treat or a new toy. This will help them associate going to the dentist with something positive.

Establish Healthy Habits Beforehand

Brushing Teeth - MH Dental

Brushing and flossing regularly is important for keeping teeth healthy—and it can also make visits to the dentist less scary. If your child knows that they're doing everything they can to take care of their teeth, they'll be less anxious about going to the dentist.

Plus, good habits will mean there’s less damage for a dentist to work on; for example, flossing reduces plaque and tartar build-up which in turn reduces the amount of time spent in the chair.


A trip to the dentist doesn’t have to be a scary experience – not if you take steps ahead of time and prepare yourself and your child properly! By encouraging open communication, choosing a pediatric dentist, and distracting your child when necessary, you can help reduce your little one’s anxiety and make sure everyone has a positive experience at their next dental appointment!

The Mills Haven Dental team is happy to welcome new clients, including your kids! Contact us today.