Your child’s first visit to the dentist is an exciting opportunity to begin establishing proper dental hygiene habits at an early age. During your visit, your child will become acquainted with their children’s dentist and the office staff while you can learn about the best ways to care for your child’s first teeth. Here, are the most common questions parents ask about a first dental visit along with the answers that will help you get the most from their exam.
How Can I Prepare My Child for the Appointment?
Depending upon the age of your child, there are several things you can do to help them be ready for going to your local dentist office. Begin by talking about the upcoming appointment, and practice opening their mouth wide for the exam. Even babies may try to mimic this movement if you do it first. Reading books about the dentist and practicing proper dental hygiene at home can also help your child be ready when they arrive for their appointment.
Will My Child Receive X-Rays?
Parents are sometimes concerned about possible radiation exposure during a child’s x-rays, yet a children’s dentist will know how to minimize any potential risks. The decision to do x-rays depends upon several factors that include the child’s age, suspected dental problems and their past history. After weighing these factors, your child’s dentist will talk to you about why an x-ray is needed and get your consent before one is performed.
Can I Stay With My Child During the Exam?
Early visits to your local dentist office offer a wonderful chance for your child to learn to trust the staff. However, you may stay with your child until they feel comfortable. Babies, especially, may need to be held on your lap during the exam. As your child matures, it is important to allow them to take an active role in their exam by encouraging them to practice more independence.
What Kinds of Treatments Will be Performed?
At a first dental visit, you can expect your child to have a complete examination of their teeth, mouth and bite alignment. For babies and young children, a regular tooth brushing followed by flossing may be all that is done on the first visit, if the child is compliant. Older children will receive dental cleanings and fluoride treatments as they are needed. Any follow-up work, such as fillings, may be done at a later appointment.
How Often Should We Return?
For healthy teeth, a children’s dentist will recommend an exam and dental cleaning to be performed every six months. However, you may need to return sooner if the dentist finds teeth that need to be treated. If you would like to have more of your questions answered, then call the dentist office to speak with our staff, and schedule an appointment today.