Does your child feel anxious about going to the dentist? If so, please let Dr. Kim and his staff know so we can make the proper accommodations for your child. We understand that not every child is going to be thrilled about going to the dentist. But for those children who experience dental anxiety or even fear, we’ll go the extra mile to help your child feel comfortable and safe.
Here’s what you can do as a parent to help your child overcome dental anxiety.
We recommend that you schedule your child’s first dental appointment once they get their first baby tooth or by their first birthday, whichever comes first. The earlier you start, the less anxiety your child is likely to experience.
Children are more perceptive than we realize. If you maintain a calm or upbeat attitude about going to the dentist, your child will start to feel the same way. Introduce dental visits as just a normal part of life and self-care.
Related: Dental Hygiene Tips for Toddlers →
In general, if this is your child’s first dental appointment, we’ll keep their visit very simple. The first appointment is more about making sure your child feels comfortable with Dr. Kim and our staff.
Dr. Kim will also take a quick peek in your child’s mouth to ensure there are no obvious signs of cavities or other oral health issues. A more thorough examination and teeth cleaning will be scheduled at a later date.
Dr. Kim has created a welcoming and child-friendly pediatric dental office. Please feel free to check out the full office tour on our website so your child has a chance to see our dental practice before their appointment with us.
When you walk in our office, you’ll be greeted by our resident stuffed bears and a fun ocean theme. Your child can check out the Crab Shack or set sail in the boat we have in our waiting room. All of these features will help put your child at ease if they’re feeling anxious or uncomfortable.
Our fun office decor will help spark your child’s sense of imagination and play, distracting them from any dental anxiety they may have felt before walking through our doors.
If your child is feeling anxious, it may be helpful to explain what they can expect during their appointment with us. Use simple, child-friendly language such as, “The dentist will ask you to open your mouth so he can count your teeth.” You can even practice counting your child’s teeth or have them count your teeth.
Avoid any language that may increase dental anxiety, such as “pain” or “shot.” If your child requires a restorative treatment, such as a pediatric filling, Dr. Kim and his staff will know how to explain it to your child in a way that’s kid-friendly and age-appropriate.
Dr. Wanki William Kim is a reputable pediatric dentist in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He’s also accepting new patients and would be more than happy to help your child overcome dental anxiety. To request an appointment for your child, please call the Pediatric Dentistry of Michigan at (616) 447-7900. You may also fill out our online contact form and someone from our team will reach out to you soon.