Educate your children on the importance of dental care.

Pediatric dentists recommend children have their first visit to the dentist by the time they turn a year old or when their first tooth comes in. These early visits will help ensure oral health and will begin to create positive associations with the dentist. Trying anything new can be scary, even for adults, but you can take steps to make your kid’s first appointment with a pediatric dentist as enjoyable as possible by reading them books about going to the dentist. Using this strategy will allow them to follow along as a character they can identify with goes through a similar experience. They will have a better idea of what to expect, and they might even get excited about their upcoming adventure. With that in mind, here are the 10 best books for kids, from birth to age 12+, you can read together to prepare for your visit.

1. Brush, Brush, Brush!

This board book is part of the Rookie Toddler series that is designed to help introduce toddlers (ages one to three) to new concepts. It includes engaging illustrations and simple, rhyming instructions that will help make brushing your teeth feel like a fun activity. The authors recommend you read through the book once and then go back through and sing the words. If you are looking for an easy introduction to brushing, start with this book.

2. The Tooth Book

This Dr. Seuss classic is also available in board book form, which makes it easier for your little one to hold and flip the pages. The content covers the purpose of teeth and how they grow and introduces ways to keep them clean and healthy. The book has all the charm and wonderful drawings you would expect from Dr. Seuss, along with some fun information about teeth.

3. Dentist Trip (Peppa Pig)

Have some Peppa Pig fans in your family? This book will help prepare your three-to five-year-old for their visit to the pediatric dentist with the help of some of their favorite characters. If your child is nervous about their next visit, this book can help put them at ease by highlighting how much fun a dentist appointment can be.

4. Sugarbug Doug: All about Cavities, Plaque and Teeth

You may find that as your kids grow older, they are more resistant to brushing. This book is fun and entertaining, but it also outlines why we brush our teeth and what happens if we let sugar and poor hygiene attack them. It is a great way to start to approach the subject from a more logical point of view and encourage older children to establish healthy routines.

5. Doctor De Soto

The brave mouse dentist in this book has no fear when it comes to treating the teeth of potentially dangerous animals. This book is written for kids from five to eight years old and offers an imaginative story with a clever plot that makes it a good read, even if you aren’t planning a trip to the pediatric dentist any time soon.

6. Just Going to the Dentist

Not only is Little Critter going to the dentist, he is having a cavity filled. If your child needs more than just a cleaning and will be getting X-rays or a filling, this book can make the entire process a little less scary. This book gives a more honest account of what patients can expect while still working to soothe any anxieties.

7. Curious George Visits the Dentist

Read along as another beloved children’s book character has to visit the dentist after biting into an apple and getting a loose tooth. The subject matter and content is perfect for kids ages four to seven. While the book does open with George being scared of the dentist, his fears are quickly put to rest, and he is able to actually enjoy his visit. The book even comes with stickers you can use to celebrate your child’s successful visit to their pediatric dentist.

8. My Dentist, My Friend

If you want to avoid delving into the details of what a visit to the pediatric dentist could entail, this book takes a more reassuring tone and provides a step-by-step guide of what will happen. It is realistic without being too graphic and works to make the dentist feel more like an accessible friend than someone trying to pry into their mouths. For kids and parents who may have already had a bad experience at the dentist, this book may be able to help put things back on course.

9. The Tooth Book: A Guide to Healthy Teeth and Gums

Looking for a comprehensive guide for more advanced children? This book covers everything from why we have teeth and how to clean them to historical fun facts about dentistry. It provides plenty of information, along with colorful illustrations for an entertaining guide that might even teach adults a thing or two.

10. Smile

This book follows the journey of a sixth grader as she deals with two injured front teeth and all the trials that come with being a teenager. The main character’s dental challenges only add to her teen angst, but the story is inspirational and a good fit for young teens who may be struggling with their own feelings about having braces, fitting in, and dealing with their peers.

Oftentimes, it is the unknown that makes new experiences so scary. Reading to your children will help them prepare for their visits to the pediatric dentist and understand the importance of dental hygiene. This will also lay the foundation for a lifetime of oral health and alleviate any anxieties about getting cleanings and treatments. Use the books listed above to start educating your children, so they can enjoy the dentist from day one.

If you are looking for the best pediatric dentist in Salem, Oregon, to guide your baby or toddler through their first dentist experience, contact Spinnaker Pediatric Dentistry. We offer a painless dental experience that will put you and your kids at ease. Call today to schedule an appointment.