My Son is Afraid of Going to the Dentist. What Should I Do?

If your son or daughter is afraid of going to the dentist, it can be difficult to know how to help him or her.

As a parent, you know how important it is to make sure your child gets good dental care, but you also don’t want him to feel scared and miserable.

Fortunately, there are things you can do as his parent to help him overcome this fear and develop a good attitude about dental appointments.

  • Take your son to a dentist who specializes in pediatric dentistry. The environment will be catered to young children, and the dentist will have extensive experience in working with kids your son’s age.
  • Give your son advanced notice of his dental appointment rather than springing it on him at the last minute, and ask him if he has any questions or concerns. Talking about the appointment ahead of time gives you the opportunity to quell his fears and put his mind at ease.
  • Consider asking your child’s dentist if you can schedule a time for him to come in and meet the dental team prior to the appointment. It may help your son if he becomes familiar with the environment, people, and noises ahead of time.
  • Plan something fun for your child to do after the appointment is over. Giving him something to look forward to can help take his mind off feeling afraid.
  • Go to the dentist yourself, and speak positively about your experience. You want your son to observe that going to the dentist for regular appointments is important and not something to be afraid of.

If you’ve tried these tips and your son is still experiencing significant fear of dental appointments, talk to his dentist. Your son or daughter may benefit from using a mild form of sedation before or during the appointment to keep him relaxed, or the dentist may have other ideas. The important thing is that he gets the dental care he needs.