Your Child's First Visit to the Dentist

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A CHILD'S FIRST VISIT TO THE DENTIST - WHEN SHOULD THAT BE?

New parents have plenty to worry about: making sure their baby is healthy and happy, re-arranging their lives around hectic schedules and lost sleep, and figuring out what to do in all sorts of novel situations. When it comes to your child's oral health, though, there's plenty of help available. It all begins at our office, when you bring your youngster in for his or her first visit to the dentist. When will we meet your child? According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, a child's first checkup should occur by age one. Surprised? You shouldn't be! Even though there may only be a few baby teeth visible at that age, there are plenty of things we can start working on — including the development of healthy habits that will make future visits to the dentist far more pleasurable. Unfortunately, some kids develop tooth decay at an early age. We will be on the lookout for cavities — but that's only one reason for an early visit to our office. Equally important is reviewing the proper ways to care for a young child's mouth, going over your child's developmental milestones, and discussing the importance of good oral hygiene.

THE FIRST VISIT FOR TODDLERS under the age of 2-1/2

Your first visit in our office with your child will be short and easy, as will all of your future appointments! Our goal is to help our patients go through their entire childhood with healthy teeth so we want to get off to any early start.

When you first arrive you will be immediately comforted by the warmth of our office and the friendliness of our staff. Of course you will be with your child at all times. You will meet the doctor and have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have. We will help you learn how to properly care for your young child's teeth and talk about important issues such as diet and oral habits. Finally, with your child in your lap the doctor will do a very quick and easy visual exam of your child's mouth to ensure that everything is healthy and developing normally. That's it!. Then we will see you again in 6 months.

THE FIRST VISIT FOR CHILDREN over the age of 2-1/2

Of course it is our wish to begin seeing our patients before the age of 2 1/2 but many times our patients come to us later or after having been to another dental office. We welcome new patients of all ages! What we do at our first appointment will depend on the age of your child at his/her first visit and their willingness to cooperate.

Don't be concerned if your child is worried or afraid - you will quickly see how comfortable he/she will become and it will likely surprise you how much they are willing to do. We never force any type of treatment on any child and always just go with the flow. If the only thing we do at a first visit is talk and do a quick visual exam, that is OK! Ideally on a first visit we would like to clean your child's teeth, do a thorough dental exam including a few X-rays and teach you and your child how to property care for their teeth. But we just see how it goes. Most children over the age of 3 do awesome for dental cleanings, x-rays and exams.

Many habits are developed early in life. That's why it's important to come in early. So when it's time for your child's first visit… don't hesitate! You'll be glad you came in.