Gentle Dental of Blue Bell
790 Penllyn Blue Bell Pike, Suite 103, Blue Bell, PA 19422

Dental Phobia – Is It a Learned Behavior?

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According to a recent survey commissioned by Delta Dental Plans, parents may be inadvertently teaching their children to be afraid of the dentist. The study was released in conjunction with National Anxiety Month in April. About half of participating parents admitted to having fear of dentist issues, and the same number of children aged 12 and under also experienced dental fear. Because children can easily absorb the negative thoughts and reactions of tense, anxious parents, it’s important for moms and dads to stay calm and focused during dental exams, and present the concept of dental care in a positive light.

Why Kids Have Fear of Dentist Appointments

Dental check-ups are essential for maintaining good oral health, but at least 40 percent of children have some degree of dental phobia that makes their dentist visits scary. Parents who participated in the Delta Dental study claimed that fear of pain was the most common cause of their kids’ anxiety. Not liking the dentist and needing additional dental work were among the lesser fears. To help allay dental fears, parents should start exposing their kids to dental care early, so they can build relationships with their dentists. A baby’s first dental appointment should be made no later than his or her first birthday. Informing the dentist of a child’s anxiety before the visit and playing dentist at home can also help lessen stress.

Dental Phobia in Adults



When parents take charge of their own dental fear, they reduce the chances of spreading it to their kids. Talking to the dentist about dental fear or seeking a dentist who specializes in treating anxious patients can be helpful. Other ways to reduce dental fear include making early morning appointments, taking a friend to dental visits, and listening to music or podcasts during treatment. For severe cases of adult dental phobia, sedation dentistry or cognitive behavioral therapy may be required.

To learn about our family dentistry practice in Blue Bell, call Gentle Dental of Blue Bell today at (267) 439-4912 or make an appointment.

Gentle Dental offers affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in Blue Bell. With 14 affiliated practices in the Greater Philadelphia area, our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At Gentle Dental of Blue Bell, we provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover an affordable dentist who truly cares at Gentle Dental of Blue Bell.

Read What Our Patients Say
Patient Reviews
Donna the hygienist is the best in the business. Your front desk is outstanding
Deborah B.
I’ve been coming to Gentle Dental for 7 years and love it. The hygienist and dentist are very skilled and very friendly and kind. I couldn’t be more happy and pleased with my dental care. […]
Alyce B.
Excellent service punctual and easy scheduling. Thank you
Lisa K.
Such a wonderful place. Always accommodating. Terry is my favorite, she was awesome with my sensitive teeth. You rock!!
Bear M.
Great service and great professional people
Robert L.
I’ve been coming to Gentle Dental for several years and the staff and service are fantastic.
Lynda S.
Everyone at the office was kind, courteous, and compassionate. The dentist was thorough and patient with my questions and took the time to explain procedures.
Jaimee M.
Fern is always so friendly & easy to talk to – even in the middle of a teeth cleaning. The dentist gives great advice & is extremely polite. I’ll pay for the more expensive dental plan […]
Paige K.
Very friendly staff, attentive and thorough. Dentist seemed quite capable and knowledgeable.
Edna R.
The staff is very understanding and compassionate. The dentists are so pleasant and really take every care to make sure you are comfortable and work very quickly and efficiently.
Jennifer F.
Char just cleaned my teeth and she was awesome! My teeth looked amazing after and she was so sweet and funny! I hope she cleans my teeth next time too:)
Rebecca S.
Fern in very good and personable.
Patrick G.
Friendly dentist and staff. Procedure was done quickly and efficiently.
Stacie T.
Everything was great from making the appointment, to the reception and most definitely the care.
Richard C.
Pleasant and efficient staff
Maria F.
Jackie is wonderful and thorough.
Kim I.
Always great care!
Richard C.
They always make sure youre not in pain
Paula W.
I will definitely recommend the Blue Bell office.
Sara L.
I recommended Gentle Dental to my friend. She is as happy with the staff and service as I am!!
Diana R.
We Accept Most Insurance Plans!
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We accept most insurance plans and will be happy to help you understand the coverage that you have. We will do our best to see that you receive your maximum insurance benefits for all covered services.

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Office Hours
  • Monday 10:30 AM - 8:00 PM
  • Tuesday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Wednesday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Thursday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Friday Closed
  • Saturday 8:00 AM - 2:00 PM
  • Sunday Closed
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  • Phone: (267) 439-4912
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