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How to Avoid Pediatric Dental Fears & Phobias

Many parents have faced dental fear within their life. Whether a certain fear began from the very first dental visit, later on in life, or stem from scary dentistry stories, a legitimate fear in the dentist is quite common. Of course, as parents, it can be a challenge to keep our children far from these fears as well. Thankfully, you don’t have to face that challenge alone! Here at Timp Pediatric Dentistry, we’re familiar with every fear in the book. Because of that, we’ve become experts at helping our young patients feel comfortable in our office and in the dentist’s chair. 

As with anything new, it’s completely natural for your child to feel uncomfortable and even scared in this unfamiliar situation. That’s why our team strives to make our office a warm, welcoming, and comfortable space for the whole family. We do our very best to make every visit to our office is a good one, but we need your support! With your help, we can make sure your child’s earliest memories in a dentist’s office are pleasant, even before you arrive!

Start Early

We often hear of parent’s struggles to keep a dental care routine consistent in their home. It can be a daily battle to help your child keep up with dental hygiene, especially if they’re entirely frustrated with the idea. However, it’s best to start as early as possible, practice patience, and stay consistent no matter what. Outside of that daily at-home routine, make dental office visits at an early age. Going to the dentist sooner rather than later can help your child recognize these visits as a normal part of life. Creating a normal routine at home and keeping up with routine visits can calm anxieties in the case of an emergency visit. 

Be Patient & Expect Resistance

Wiggles, whines, cries, we’ve seen and heard it all. Examinations, as comfortable as we can make them, don’t always go over well with our apprehensive patients. When your child acts out in the dentist’s chair, it can be difficult to hold back from giving them comfort or disciplining poor behavior. We ask that, instead of jumping right in, look to our dental assistants or dentist for some guidance. We have the experience to handle our tougher patients with care, professionalism, and a healthy amount of patience. When your child sees that you’re entrusting us with his or her care, they’re more likely to calm over time.

Choose Your Words Carefully

We always encourage parents to talk to their little ones before an upcoming dentist appointment. It’s healthy for your child to be curious and uncertain about what might happen. When talking to your child, choose words and descriptions wisely. No child wants to associate every pediatric dentist visit with terms like shot, needle, drills or even hurt. Our team is ready to help your child understand dentistry terms in a non-threatening way, explaining each step with gentle care. Before your appointment, try your best to focus on the positives of a dental visit versus the phobia-triggering words. Use positive words that relate to the health of their mouth, like strong, bright, and clean!

Want to help your little one reduce their dental fears and phobias? Contact our office today! We can help guide you through these tougher moments and explain what a visit with Timp will be like.


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25 North 1100 East

American Fork, UT 84003

(801) 207-9080

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