Saturday, February 23, 2013

A Visit to the Dentist: Book and Learning Activities

February is National Children's Dental Health Month. It also just so happened that baby bookworm took her very first trip to the dentist this month.

I wanted baby bookworm to know what she could expect at the dentist, so we read The Berenstain Bears Visit the Dentist. In this story brother bear visits the dentist to get a cavity filled, and sister bear goes along to get her loose tooth pulled.

With kid-friendly language and pictures that show exactly what a child will encounter on his first visit to the dentist, it is the perfect book to read to help a child feel at ease with this new experience.

Baby bookworm did amazing while in the dentist's chair, and I actually learned a lot from the dentist about what she should be eating and drinking and what she should not (I didn't know raisins were worse than chocolate for your teeth!). I am a firm believer that reading books before (or after) various life events helps a child to feel more at ease. Children can easily identify with their favorite characters, and will make the connection back to the book! Unfortunately I forgot to take pictures at this first appointment so I don't have any to share, but will hopefully remember to bring my camera in 6 months at the next visit.

As a follow-up to our trip to the dentist, we did two learning activities based around a dental theme. Here they are:

Count Your Teeth

One of the things that the dentist did while he was examining baby bookworm was count her teeth. She learned that she had 10 on the top, and 10 on the bottom.

Repetition is an easy learning technique, so to reinforce (and repeat) what she had learned at the dentist, we did a counting and sequencing activity with baby bookworm where she had to put 20 teeth in order in a mouth.


"Good" Food or "Bad" Food

The dentist also talked to us a great deal about the foods that will help to build healthy teeth and those that will hurt teeth. To repeat this idea, we did a sorting task and categorized different foods as to whether they were healthy for our teeth or bad for our teeth.

Even if you don't have a trip to the dentist coming up, I hope you have fun with these learning activities! And if you do, "Good Luck".


  1. All these methods you did to prep your daughter to her first dentist visit is amazing. And as we witnessed, it helped her a lot. Not only that she wasn't scared about going to the dentist, she also now has an idea to take care of her teeth. I commend you for raising her well; and of course, for these helpful tips. I'm sure a lot of parents will benefit from this. Thank you!
    Reginald Cooper

  2. That children’s book is a great read! It can help encourage and motivate them on their visits to the dentist. Most of the time, kids are the ones who are most afraid of the dentist. It’s good to hear that there is something that can help explain that they don't have to be afraid of the man in white. Thanks for sharing!

    Milton Wilson @ A+ Family Dentistry

  3. The dental work and service that your kid had was, shall we say, complete. It was a good idea to tie in the dental treatment with the child's favorite literature. That way, they will be able to understand the dental process not as something enforced, but as a health narrative that your kid can take part in, even while that young.

    Benny Murray @ Dental Care Of South Jersey

  4. I grew up with those books and I absolutely adore them. I had not realized that they had also decided to put it on tv. Recently I noticed that they have their own tv show. It is cartoon and very much like the drawings in the book and the voices are so perfect. It made me so happy to see.

    Joanna @ Westheimer Dentist


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