A Child’s First Dental Visit
It is recommended that your child’s 1st visit to the dentist should be as stress free and as fun as possible. If a parent is concerned about something in a child’s mouth it is recommended to bring the child no matter the age. Otherwise, the best time for a child’s first check up is around 3 years of age. At this time, the child is able to communicate with the dentist and simple things can be shown to the patient so they understand what we are going to do. This usually results in a pleasant uneventful appointment that makes the following check up even easier. Visiting a dentist at a young age allows them to become familiar with the dental environment, the noises around it and the friendly dental team. The worst thing to do is to wait until your child has a problem and they come to their first dental appointment in pain. This can lead to poor patterns of attendance as an adult and the consequences of that.
At your child’s 1st dental visit the dentist will take a note of any medication or allergies your child may have and keep this updated at every appointment to ensure they can carry out the best possible treatment for your child. After having checked your child’s oral health and development of their teeth, the dentist may discuss a number of things with you. These can include:
1. Your child’s diet 2. Brushing techniques 3. Habits they may have that could affect the development of teeth (thumb sucking) 4. Risk of decay in children’s teeth 5. Ways to prevent decay
It is completely normal for children to feel anxious or get upset in the dental surgery. The dentist and dental team are trained in dealing with these situations, they are always as gentle as possible and try their best to put your child at ease. If your child does feel worried about visiting the surgery then hopefully as they attend their regular check-ups, they will learn to realise the dentist is a place not to be feared.
Remember, regular dental check-ups are required every 6 months for you and your children. Prevention is better than cure!