Gentle Dental of Shelby Township
4737 24 Mile Rd Suite 1, Shelby Township, MI 48316

Parents, Your Dental Fear Might Be Contagious

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If your kids’ dental fear causes tears and tantrums before every exam, it may be a learned behavior that you taught them. A new study from Delta Dental found that the number of parents who are afraid of the dentist matches the number of children who experience the same terror. Experts warn that children react to how their parents and siblings feel about dentistry, so remaining cool and collected during dental exams is essential for making kids feel safe and comfortable. Since April is National Anxiety Awareness Month, it’s a perfect time to work on combating dental phobia.

Avoiding Dental Fear

Almost 36 percent of kids are afraid of routine dental exams, which are essential for oral health. According to the Delta Dental survey, parents say fear of pain is the most common reason for their children’s dental fear. Lesser concerns include long visit times and the possibility of needing further treatment. Some kids are worried they won’t like the dentist. Fear of dentist equipment such as drills and suction devices can make things even worse. If children associate dentistry with negative feelings, it could cause them to avoid dental care throughout life.

Here are some tips for managing dental fear.

  • Role play at home by playing dentist and counting your child’s teeth, or use a stuffed toy as a prop.
  • Let the dentist know about your child’s dental fear before the visit.
  • Take your child to the dentist when they’re very young. Make the first appointment no later than his or her first birthday.
  • Never use words that will frighten your child when talking about the dentist. Avoid negative talk and focus on positive aspects of dental care.

Controlling Fear of Dentist

You can avoid passing your own fears down to your children by getting your own dental phobia under control. There are ways to ease your dental fear, so make sure your dentist knows you are nervous, so he or she can help you relax. To avoid feeling anxious all day, book early morning appointments. Have a friend or loved one join you for the visit. Agree on a hand signal or other sign that lets your dentist know you are feeling overwhelmed or uncomfortable during treatment. If your dental phobia is severe, talk to your dentist about sedation dentistry options, or seek counseling from a mental health professional.

To learn about our family dentistry practice in Shelby Township, call Gentle Dental of Shelby Township today at (248) 721-4086 or make an appointment.

Gentle Dental offers affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in Shelby Township. With 8 affiliated practices throughout Michigan, our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At Gentle Dental of Shelby Township, we provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover an affordable dentist who truly cares at Gentle Dental of Shelby Township.

Read What Our Patients Say
Patient Reviews
Staff is friendly and service great. Very professional
Paula G.
This is the friendliness most caring office I have ever been to. The six staff members I encountered worked so well together and really seemed to enjoy working with one another, which made me feel so […]
Adam J.
The staff at Gentle Dental in Shelby Twp have been my dental professionals for over 20 years. The facility is extremely clean, the dentists are knowledgeable and friendly, Debi the dental hygienist […]
Michele C.
Good service, short wait times, friendly staff
Deborah E.
I had a small emergency they able to see me immediately they were all very friendly and helpful I had a small emergency been able to get me into your schedule immediately everyone was very helpful […]
Mike C.
very nice and friendly. very good dentist and cleaning done for your teeth
Robert B.
Everyone is friendly and the service is superb.
Diane W.
I had not been to dentist in eight years because of bad experience somewhere else. I finally bit the bullet and made an appointment at gentle dental in Shelby. I feared that it had been so long I […]
Joshua B.
Very friendly and helpful staff.
Terrence W.
The staff was very nice and professional. Dr Torres was great and he was very informative and explained the procedures.
Margo M.
The staff is very friendly , they genuinely seem to care about you as a person. The dentist is very gentle , calming and does a great job.
Carolyn S.
I’ve been coming here for quite a few years and feel like they really care about my health and understand my fears about any pain I might be feeling.
Cynthia M.
hygentist & dentist both were concered for the best p ossible outcomes for me
Harold P.
Nice people , friendly and helpful.
Bill B.
So friendly, and we shared some laughs.
Enrico N.
Very thorough, answered all my questions, staff is friendly.
Otto A.
Great dentist! First time there and I didn’t feel any pressured into anything. Great experience.
Katelyn M.
Great care and advice from my hygienist, Debi Winkler. She is such an inspiration.
Victoria G.
Absolutely fantastic place. I feel lucky to have found it. Genuinely careing, friendly and all around cool staff. Makes going to the dreaded dentist a million times better. I’ve been putting off […]
Gage G.
friendly, professional employees, nice office,
Marie H.
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