Tips for Managing Dental Anxiety in Kids

Posted by Nishikawa Family Dentistry May 14, 2023

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Going to the dentist can be a nerve-wracking experience for anyone, but it can be especially daunting for kids. The unfamiliar surroundings, strange equipment, and perceived pain can all contribute to dental anxiety in children. As a parent or caregiver, it's natural to want to help ease your child's fears and make their dental visits as comfortable as possible. In this blog post, we'll share some tips for managing dental anxiety in kids so that they can have a positive experience at the dentist and maintain good oral health throughout their lives.

Tips to Help Manage Dental Anxiety in Kids

As parents, it is our responsibility to ensure that our children are healthy and happy. However, taking them to the dentist can often cause anxiety and fear in kids. The sights, sounds, and smells of a dental office can be overwhelming for little ones. Here are some tips to help manage dental anxiety in kids.

  • Firstly, start early! The earlier you introduce your child to the dentist's office, the more comfortable they will become with it. Take them along when you go for your check-ups or schedule a "meet-and-greet" appointment where they can meet the dentist and staff.
  • Secondly, talk about it openly! Explain what happens during a dental visit in simple terms that your child can understand. You could even read books or watch videos together that explain what happens at a dental appointment.
  • Thirdly, practice relaxation techniques such as deep breathing before leaving for the appointment. This helps calm nerves and reduce stress levels.
  • Fourthly, choose words carefully! Avoid using phrases like "It won't hurt" or "Don't worry." Instead, use positive affirmations like "You're doing great!" or "We'll get through this together."
  • Reward bravery! Offer praise after each successful visit, and consider rewarding your child with something special, like their favorite treat or toy.

By implementing these tips consistently over time, children will eventually feel less anxious about visiting the dentist, which would encourage good oral health habits from an early age while reducing their fears around seeing dentists.


Dental anxiety in kids is a common issue that can be managed with the right approach. By implementing the tips we've discussed throughout this article, parents and caregivers can help their children feel more comfortable and confident when visiting the dentist.

Remember to start early by introducing your child to a positive dental experience, communicate openly about what will happen during their visit, choose a kid-friendly dentist who understands how to work with anxious patients, use distraction techniques such as music or games to keep them occupied during treatment and provide praise and rewards for good behavior.

With these strategies in place, you'll be able to help your child overcome their fear of going to the dentist while ensuring they maintain good oral health habits that will last a lifetime.

To learn more about our dental services, you can schedule your appointment with our Torrance dentist by calling Nishikawa Family Dentistry at (310) 543-1655 or visiting us at 3556 Torrance Boulevard, Suite C, Torrance, CA 90503. 

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3556 Torrance Boulevard, Suite C, Torrance, CA 90503

Nishikawa Family Dentistry

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Nishikawa Family Dentistry