Posts from 2018-09-19

How to Help Your Child Overcome Their Fear of the Dentist

An American Association of Endodontists survey discovered that 80% of adult Americans have the fear of the dentist.

More than 50% say this fear can stop them from visiting a dentist, and about 5-10% are considered dental phobics--individuals so scared of dentists that they'll do whatever they can to avoid dental care.

The idea of a routine tooth cleaning causes fear in grownups, so it's natural that children may also find dental visits rather daunting.

Is your kid scared of a dental visit? If so, here's how to help them relax before their next dental checkup.

Start Young

Start your kid's visit early on. Kids should have their first dental visit as soon as possible--ideally the first birthday.

Dental offices are built to help kids have a relaxed and comfortable visit. A child dentist often applies medicine to ease dental fears there and then, such as oxygen inhalation or nitrous oxide.

More importantly, however, communication between the parent, dentist, and child builds confidence and trust that lasts through a lifetime of dental checkups.

Overcome Fear of the Dentist with Role Play

Sometimes enacting a scenario helps to ease children's fears when they're actually in that situation.

For example, playing the dentist with your children helps them get acquainted with what actually happens in a dental office. This can help them prepare better for the visit.

Set up a mock dental chair in the living room or dining room, and play the dentist. Examine your child's teeth, pretend to check inside the kid's mouth, count their teeth, and discuss X-rays.

Thank your kid for 'visiting' and give them a sticker. Your child will now be a bit more ready for the actual visit.

Lead by Example

A great way to get your kid ready for routine dental checkups and teeth cleaning is to take them along to some of your visits. If you show your child that you're comfortable, happy and maybe even having fun, they may overcome much of their anxiety.

By coming with you, your kid can discover how a dentist visit can help prevent health issues as they grow older.

Ask Around

The dentists' training prepares them to treat everyone regardless of age. After 2-3 visits, your kid will get more used to the dentist's routine.

If you're not sure of where to look for a child dentist, ask people around you for recommendations on dentists who are good at treating nervous kids.

Your local doctor, work colleagues, or friends may be an excellent source to get a recommendation.

Make Your Kid See that the Dentist is Human, After All

For a kid seeing the dentist for the very first time, a dentist's mask may be very scary. If you're on your own appointment, introduce the dentist to your child so they cease being a stranger.

It's even better if you can point out something you two have in common. For instance: "This is Dr. Jones. He's got a dog like us! May I show you a photo?"

By taking your kid to routine dental exams from when they're very young, instead of waiting to fix a painful condition, your kid will realize that a dental visit isn't always associated with pain.

Watch Your Words

Never use the 'P' (pain), 'H' (hurt), or 'S' (shot) words with kids. Let the dentist introduce their own lexicon to kids to help them cope with difficult situations.

Instead, tell your kid that the doctor is checking for "sugar bugs" so they can remove them from teeth. You can also tell them that the dentist is going to count their teeth and check their smile.

Use positive lines like "strong, clean, healthy teeth" to show the kid that the visit is good fun, rather than frightening and alarming.

Make them Read Books on Visiting the Dentist

Reading from a colorful, fun book helps relax kids. Plenty of books have been written about visiting the dentist.

They usually describe what goes on in the dentist's chair, and place characters in amusing situations so children can see that visiting the dentist is no big deal.

If kids see their beloved characters having their teeth cleaned, they'll think that it's not that bad.

Stay with Your Kid

When your kid visits the dentist for the first time ever, they may experience anxiety regardless of how much you have prepared them. By staying close, you can help your kid stay positive and calm.

This is an excellent way to help your child beat the fear of the dentist and gradually get comfortable having exams on their own.

Have a Plan 'B'

It's normal for little ones to be troublesome, so it's always best to meet with the dentist and dental hygienist prior to the visit and disclose some information about your kid.

Tell them about siblings, their beloved Disney character, or their new puppy. This way, the dentist can chat about things your kid can relate to should there a fussy moment.

Just changing their state of mind for a minute can eliminate the fear and stop the tears.

Give Them Treats for Bravery

A reward always helps put a smile on your child's face in a big way. Make a deal prior to the visit.

For example, if your little darling can brave the whole treatment they'll get a treat, such as a new book or a trip to their favorite restaurant.

You can even create a game. For example, for each smile you see your kid make at the office, you can reward them with points they can redeem for a special gift.


These pointers will help you manage your kid's dental anxiety better. However, if you need experienced professional help, please call in a therapist to help your child be more ready and able to stay calm in the dentist's office.

At Grout Family Dentistry, we offer comprehensive dental care to all, including children.

Contact us today for more information about how we can take care of your child's oral health and help them overcome their fear of the dentist.


7 Reasons You Should Try Porcelain Veneers for a Beautiful Smile

Dental veneers are very thin shells of man-made, tooth-colored porcelain that is placed over the natural tooth to correct discoloration, cracks, and chips, or hide gaps and misshapen teeth. The application of porcelain veneers is a cosmetic dentistry option that has grown in popularity over the years as more people have sought improved smiles and a boost in self-confidence.

 Some people aren't so lucky when it comes to the genetics of their teeth and choose porcelain veneers to give them what they weren't blessed with. Others enjoy beautiful teeth in their youth, but wear and tear over many years can have an effect on a once perfect smile.

 Porcelain veneers are an option for men and women, both young and old, and can correct a myriad of problems from broken teeth to a less than pleasing color. If you've heard about porcelain veneers and been curious if they might be an option for you, read on to discover why so many patients choose porcelain veneers each year.

 Resistant To Stains

Though there are other veneer options besides porcelain, they're your best bet if you're looking for teeth that are resistant to stains. Porcelain is a popular choice because of its smooth surface that is non-porous in nature. This stain-resistant ability comes from the process the porcelain undergoes during lab manufacturing. This process that enables the veneers to stay whiter, longer. Even with porcelain veneers, however, it's always a good idea to steer clear of food and drinks which tend to stain teeth. Lots of coffee and red wine, for instance, will slowly take away from the clean, bright, white effect that you love about your teeth, no matter what.

 Porcelain Veneers Are Very Durable

 Patients who are undergoing a dental procedure do so with the hopes that their results will last a long time. This is especially true when getting veneers; you'll want your teeth to last and look good for many years to come.

The good news with porcelain veneers is that they have an extra long shelf life when compared to other veneer materials.

 Porcelain veneers have a lifespan of around 15 years compared to 5-7 years for composite veneers.

 If you're serious about getting veneers and investing in a beautiful smile, the route for longevity points toward porcelain.

Porcelain veneers will cost more when you replace them, but when you consider how much longer you'll enjoy them without multiple trips to the dentist, you'll discover it's worth the cost for greater durability.

Can Cover Discolored Teeth

Now you know that porcelain veneers are very resistant to stains. But what about your natural teeth that have already become discolored over the years?

Your natural teeth can become discolored to a point where they no longer respond to professional whitening efforts. This might happen due to your genetics, as a result of certain medications you've been taking, or because of habits with food and drink that are known to stain.

Whatever the reasons, veneers are a great option for instantly whitening those stubborn teeth. Your dentist can apply veneers over the teeth that have become discolored and stained to give you a new, refreshed smile.

 Serve As An Alternative To Adult Braces

Veneers aren't only an option for brightening your smile. Some dentists might even suggest porcelain veneers as an option for closing gaps between your teeth.

Though veneers can't correct an overbite or severely crooked teeth, a full set of porcelain veneers can cover your natural smile with a smile you're more comfortable showcasing. It's also a quicker, less painful alternative to adult braces which can take a lot of time and patience.

Veneers can also cover teeth that are oddly mishap. If you have a tooth or teeth that stand out from the rest because of their shape, a dental veneer can be made to match the appearance of your other teeth. Doing so will give you a more blended, appealing smiled.

Can Strengthen A Chipped Tooth

Even a small crack or chip in one of your teeth can really distract from the overall appeal of your smile. And however minor the crack or chip, the damage can get worse over time and endanger the longtime health of your tooth or teeth.

Porcelain veneers can be the perfect option for quickly repairing a cracked or chipped tooth. A single porcelain veneer placed over the damaged tooth will immediately improve it's appearance while strengthening it and protecting it from any future damage.

Are Matched To Look Like Natural Teeth

Porcelain veneers are a favorite among dentists and patients for many reasons, but one of the biggest is the ability to match their color, shade, and shape for a completely natural appearance.

Those who wear porcelain veneers often feel very comfortable with their choice and rarely worry that other people notice that they have anything other than their own teeth. Porcelain veneers are an all-around great choice for achieving an adjustment to your smile with natural results.

 Can Completely Transform Your Smile

There are very few things you can do to completely alter your appearance for the better as quickly and easily as can be done with porcelain veneers. Your smile plays such a huge role in how you look and how you feel.


You can decide to cover a couple teeth to better match your natural teeth, or have a full new set of veneers installed and take your teeth several shades whiter and expertly shaped in the process.


And with porcelain veneers, your smile can be completely transformed in no time. For most patients, the veneers can be applied in a few appointments, max.


 Learn More


To learn more about porcelain veneers and if they're a good option for you, schedule an appointment with one of our experienced dentists. We'll go over all your questions in detail and talk about what kind of results you can expect if you do decide to move forward with porcelain veneers.


Feel free to contact us during with any questions you might have in the meantime. We look forward to helping you create the smile you've always hoped for!



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Littleton, CO 80120
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