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Guide to Your Kid’s First Dental Visit

As a loving parent, you constantly strive to provide your children with the best possible care, especially when it comes to their health. One significant aspect of their health is dental care. Unfortunately, this aspect is often overlooked or set aside. Below, we provide a guide to your kid’s first dental visit.

Guide to Your Kid’s First Dental Visit

A lot of people realize the importance of dental care when it’s already too late. That’s why it’s crucial that dental care begins early in life with a kids dentist.

And if you’re wondering when your little one should start seeing a dentist if you need to find a dentist separate from your own, and how you can prepare your child for their first dental visit, you’re in the right place.

Why the First Dental Visit Is Important

Experts say that children should start visiting a pediatric dentist six months after the first tooth has erupted or just before their first birthday.

The first dental visit is crucial because:

✔ The dentist gets to see if there are any future concerns, like teething issues, irregular alignment, etc., that need to be addressed.
✔ Early detection of possible issues can help your dentist prevent the situation from worsening.
✔ This will help the dentist track the developmental changes, delays, or abnormalities that your child may be undergoing.
✔ The dentist can also give you valuable information about:

  • Baby bottle tooth decay
  • pacifier habits
  • infant feeding practices
  • infant mouth cleaning
  • teething
  • finger-sucking

✔ This creates the perfect opportunity for your children to familiarize themselves with their dentist and the dental clinic in a pain-free way, allowing them to associate dental check-ups with positive feelings.

The Search for the Right Dentist

The first thing to remember is that you should find a pediatric dentist. Pediatric dentists complete dental school, just like any other general dentist. However, pediatric dentists continue studying for another two or three years.

These extra years focus on the prevention and treatment of dental issues that happen in childhood. During these years, they learn to detect dental problems that only affect children. They learn about child development and psychology to help them interact effectively with very young patients.

Tips for Finding the Right Pediatric Dentist

✔ Using a search engine, you can look for pediatric dentists in your area.

✔ Check out what other parents say about these dentists by reading the reviews.
These reviews can give you important insights about a particular dentist, but you also
have to remember that reviews can also be biased.

✔ Ask your family and friends for recommendations.
They are the best people to trust when it comes to giving you reliable information.

✔ Schedule an appointment

Once you have created a short list of dentists, call to schedule an appointment with
each one so you can meet the dentists and have a feel of their personality, their staff,
and the overall environment and vibe of their clinic.

Before the First Dental Visit

Once you have chosen your pediatric dentist, it’s time to prepare for the visit.

  • Suppose your child has already celebrated his first birthday and already enjoys looking at illustrated books or watching videos. In that case, you may introduce the concept of dentists by reading a book to him, letting him absorb the illustrations, or watching a video about dentists and dental care with him.
  • If your child is on the role-playing stage, play with him, assume the role of a dentist, and let him be the patient. You can reverse the roles afterward.
  • Create anticipation. Talk in an animated manner when you tell him about his first dental visit.
  • If your child is between ten months and two years old, inform your dentist ahead of time if your little one cries or gets upset when somebody takes them away from you.
  • Children two years or older may tolerate being away from their parents for a brief period. Inform your dentist about your child’s particular behavior in this area.
  • Feel free to bring a comfort toy along, or whatever it is that will make things easier for your little one during the dental visit.

During the Visit

✔ Remember to be calm. Children can sense their parents’ anxieties. When you are anxious, your child will be anxious too.
✔ Offer words of support and encouragement to your child.

After the Visit

Celebrate your child’s milestone. Treat your child to his favorite snack, give him a sticker or watch his favorite movie with him.

Whatever you do, make sure that you make it a fun and memorable day for him. This will create anticipation for the next dental visit and instill positive dental habits that will benefit him for the rest of his life.

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