Dental Fear in Children: Brought on by parents?

A study conducted in Washington State in 2004 and another conducted in Madrid, Spain in 2012 both reported findings that support a direct relationship between parents’ dental fear and their child’s fear of the dentist.

The Washington study examined dental fear among 421 children ages 0.8 to 12.8 years old. They were patients at 21 different private pediatric dental practices in western Washington state. The Spanish study observed 183 children between the ages of seven and 12 as well as their parents.

The Washington study used responses from both parents and the Dental Sub-scale of the Child Fear Survey Schedule. The survey consisted of 15 questions, which invited answers based on the child’s level of fear. The scale was one to five: one meant the child wasn’t afraid at all, and five indicated he or she was terrified. The maximum possible points (based on the greatest fear) was 75.

Spanish researchers found a direct connection between parental dental fear levels and those among their kids. The most important new discovery from the Madrid study was that the greater the fear a father had of going to the dentist, the higher the level of fear among the other family members.

Parents, but especially fathers, who feared dental procedures appeared to pass those fears along to every member of the family. Parents can still have some control over fear levels in their children. It is best not to express your own concerns in front of kids; instead, explain why going to the dentist is important.

Dr. Franklin Rios and our team work hard to make your child’s visit at our Jacksonville office as comfortable as possible. We understand some patients may be more fearful than others, and will do our best to help ease your child’s anxiety.

What Our Patients Say

After four years of searching I finally found a dentist who is so much like the one I left in Lake Placid, Fl. Dr. Rios is kind, personable, efficient and his staff reflects that attitude. Yes I'd recommend him to family. friends and someone who is looking for a really good dentist.
-Gordon H.

Dr. Rios is by far the best Dentist I have ever had!!! He did a perfect job on my front 4 teeth 11 years ago and they still look great today. I now drive from Charlotte, NC to see family and make sure I come to see Dr. Rios rather than someone where I live. I just have 100% trust in him.
-Gregory B.

I used to be terrified of dentist, however Doctor Rios and his staff make you feel right at home! If I even flinch, he's giving me more numbing stuff, no questions asked. So glad to have found him and his wonderful staff!
-Melissa T.

Love it here! Amazing staff! Had fillings done and my last experience was so bad but here it was great and staff was reassuring. Great doctor, great staff.
-Lisa B.

Amazing! I've had an amazing experience with this office. Dr. Rios and staff have become like an extended family. His touch is very light when working on your teeth. He explains everything and I mean everything. All visits were not only painless in the office but painless at home as well.
-Sherndina M.

I've been going here for a year now and am completely satisfied. Very little wait, pleasant staff, a great doctor, and best of all my teeth look better than they ever have. Sometimes you get lucky with doctors and this is a great example of this.
-John T.

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