It’s not uncommon for children to be a little freaked out by the dentist. It’s mainly because they don’t know what to expect and often times, they pick up on adults’ hesitancies. It’s completely understandable. However, once they’ve hopped up into Dr. Paddy or Dr. Castro’s chair a few times and experience how awesome our Kids Mile High offices are, they’ll actually like visits. Getting over that initial anxiety before they’re comfortable with their favorite Englewood or Central Park, CO pediatric dentist is the challenge though.
A while back, we wrote a post about helping children overcome a fear of the dentist and one of our ideas was reading books about the dentist. When kids see their favorite characters enjoying a cleaning and interacting with the doctor, it takes away some of the unknowns and helps put them at ease. Plus, you can’t go wrong encouraging reading. Here are some of our favorite children’s books about going to the dentist perfect for helping to prepare your child for an appointment:
Just Going to the Dentist (Little Critter) by Mercer Mayer
Mercer Mayer is such a talented author and illustrator and the Little Critter series is a favorite of Dr. Paddy’s. In this book, Little Critter goes to the dentist for a check-up, which includes x-rays, and even has to have a cavity filled. Of course, he handles the situation with bravery and humor and kids will see that dental visits aren’t something to be frightened of. Interested in checking it out? You can put a hold on this one at the Englewood Public Library.
Curious George Visits the Dentist by Margret and H.A. Rey
Curious George is always getting into shenanigans and his visit to the dentist is no exception. This one is probably the funniest in our list of the best children’s books about going to the dentist. It all starts when George bites into an apple and his tooth begins to hurt and wiggle. The man in the yellow hat decides a trip to the dentist is in order but, since it’s his first time, Curious George is a bit nervous. Thankfully, he overcomes his fear, learns the ins and outs of caring for his smile and has fun in the process.
Doctor De Soto by William Steig
This isn’t just one of the best children’s books about the dentist, it’s one of the best children’s books period and it even received a Newbery Honor. Yeah, we might be a little biased because the main character is a dentist but it’s quickly becoming one of the classics. Written by William Steig, the author who wrote Shrek!, the same book the movie was based on, it puts a unique, whimsical spin on dentistry that will help kids feel more relaxed and positive about their own appointments. The best part is that it’s geared towards children of all ages and parents will enjoy it too.
In the book, Dr. De Soto is a dentist and his wife is his assistant. They also happen to be mice. They have super dental skills and treat animals who have toothaches painlessly and quickly. They make a habit of avoiding treating animals who might eat them but all that changes when a fox with a taste for mice visits with severe tooth pain and they have to find a way to give him the care he needs without becoming a snack. Check it out from the Sam Gary Branch Library in Central Park.
The Berenstain Bears Visit the Dentist by Stan and Jan Berenstain
This is another of the classic children’s books on the dentist and features the beloved Berenstain Bears family. Dr. Bearson fills Brother Bear’s small cavity and then Sister Bear has to have a loose and dangling baby tooth removed. The story is geared towards the preschool set and it’s upbeat, positive and informative. The book is available at several Denver Public Library branches if you want to give it a read.
My Dentist, My Friend by P.K. Hallinan
A lot of the children’s books for the dentist do mention cavities, fillings and a few talk about getting teeth pulled. They all have a positive take on it and discuss it in a way that doesn’t elicit fear. That being said, you know your child best. If you’re gearing up for their first visit and they’re more sensitive and have considerable anxiety about it, your best bet may be opting for children’s books about visiting the dentist that make no mention of procedures like My Dentist, My Friend by P.K. Hallinan. This book focuses only on the positive aspects and is a step-by-step guide to dental visits, which can be really reassuring.
The Tooth Book: A Guide to Healthy Teeth and Gums by Edward Miller
We absolutely adore this comprehensive, lively, colorful guide for kids on taking care of their teeth and gums. It’s full of helpful information and awesome imagery. It really makes oral hygiene fun. It also has details telling children what to expect when they visit the dentist. While several of the children’s books about going to the dentist are meant for preschoolers and toddlers, elementary-aged kids will really like this one. It’s excellent for children who can read on their own and it will help them feel more engaged in their oral health.
While this list could go on for a quite a while, these are our favorite children’s books about going to the dentist because they mix humor, beautiful illustrations, good stories and fun. Demystifying dental visits by reading all about them is a powerful way to help kids get over their jitters. Head to the Public Library or swing by your local Denver bookstore (we’re partial to Second Star to the Right Children’s Books, Tattered Cover Book Store and The Bookies Bookstore) to find all of the best titles.
When you’re ready to tackle seeing the tooth doctor in real life, book – see what we did there? – an appointment at Kids Mile High Pediatric Dentistry in Central Park or Englewood by giving us a call at (303) 779-5306 (Englewood) or (303) 399-5437 (Central Park). We promise, we’ll make the experience exciting for your child and stress-free for you.