A paediatric dentist in the US state of New Jersey has achieved Internet fame with videos showing him using magic tricks to make his young patients feel at ease.

One video, viewed more than 20 million times on Facebook, shows Dr Eyal Simchi enchanting a little boy standing beside a large dental treatment chair. Using magic thumb lights, Dr Simchi makes it appear as if he’s pulling balls of light out of the boy’s nose and from under his chin. They even “play catch” with the lights. A Facebook user described the video as “heartwarming” on Simchi’s page.

Another video shows a young patient laughing as Dr Simchi, a father of six, makes the blank pages in a comic book suddenly become full of drawings, then coloured pictures and, after he shakes the book, blank again.

On the Facebook page of Dr Simchi’s practice, Riverfront Pediatric Dentistry in the borough of Elmwood Park, the mother of a six-year-old girl who had a tooth drilled wrote that her daughter had come out “smiling from ear to ear and talking about everything that she loved, not even mentioning or remembering that she had any work done on her teeth”.

Dr Simchi reportedly sings with his patients sometimes, and occasionally lets them act as “assistants” with other patients before their own appointments. At least one adult, absolutely taken by his manner, expressed hope in a Facebook comment that he would accept her as a patient.

“Unfortunately we only treat kids and patients with special needs,” Dr Simchi replied good-naturedly. “My assistant keeps a list of the adults who are trying to sneak in.” – dpa