Regular dental checkups are essential for keeping your child’s teeth healthy, and they can help form good oral hygiene habits your child will be grateful for. Yet, many parents do not take their children to the dentist. Most parents believe that the experience will be unpleasant, and if you are struggling to get your kid excited about their dentist visit, we have the right thing for you.

Here at North Pointe Dental Associates, we are home to some of the best Tampa dentists. We have been serving the entire Tampa Bay community and creating world-class smiles since 1976. To put together a list of the best tricks to make your kid enjoy the next visit to the dentist, we spoke to the best dentists in Tampa.

Why do kids distrust dentists?

Even some adults feel discouraged when thinking about sitting in a chair while a stranger pokes around inside their mouth. It is no surprise, then, that some kids are afraid of the dentist. There are a few other particular reasons that often come up.

Children tend to fear the dentist if they feel the dentist does not want to walk them through the process, which is why our dentists make sure to explain the procedure to the child beforehand and answer all the questions along the way.

We never belittle them. Instead, we are straightforward with our answers and explanations, and we always treat the children with dignity and respect.

Another reason is lack of control and feeling helpless. Our North Tampa dentists focus on making the child feel involved and in control – turning them into a partner in the procedure, and not just a subject.

What can parents do to make the experience as pleasant as possible?

The first and most important thing you can do is to start early. As soon as the first tooth appears, you can start introducing them to a dentist. As they grow older, regular checkups will turn into a normal part of their oral hygiene routine.

Fear can stem from the unknown, so make sure to tell them what to expect before bringing them to the dental practice. Talk about your experience after your appointment and get them excited about their next visit.

Play pretend with your kid to create a sense of familiarity. This might help them feel more comfortable with someone else touching and examining their teeth. While playing, explain to them why dental checkups are essential.

Put them in charge! What kid does not like to make decisions on their own? If the dentist asks which toothpaste flavor to use, let your kid decide – no matter long it takes them. This will give them a sense of control, which in turn will make them feel more comfortable.

Also important are positive reinforcements. For younger children, bring their favorite teddy or portable video games for older children to keep them distracted. After the appointment, congratulate them for being brave and reward them with lunch at their favorite restaurant or a new toy.

Schedule your next appointment!

With the best dentists in Tampa on board, we can help you with all your oral health needs. Our dentists specialize in general and cosmetic dentistry and are more than happy to answer all your questions and concerns about your unique needs. We offer services ranging from teeth whitening to dental veneers and dental implants. Call us today at (813) 961-1727 and schedule an appointment.