Going to the children’s dentist for the first time can be a nerve-wracking experience for children and parents alike. But it doesn’t have to be that way. With the right preparation and the selection of a good children’s dentist, everyone can have a positive first dental visit that will help build a lifetime of good oral hygiene habits.
Before you go to the children’s dentist for the first time, make sure you have a list of any medicines your child takes or ongoing medical concerns ready for the dentist’s records. You will also probably want to discuss your child’s sucking habits. This may include any thumb or finger sucking, as well as the use of a pacifier. The earlier you can curb your child’s sucking habits, the better it is for their teeth and jaw formation and alignment.
Here are some things you can do at home to protect your child’s oral health:
- Encourage the end of sucking behaviours as early as possible.
- Purchase child-sized soft toothbrushes and replace at least every 3 months.
- Help your child brush twice a day – after breakfast and before bed.
- Avoid high sugar and starchy snacks.
- Avoid putting your child to bed with a bottle.
At your child’s first visit to the children’s dentist, the focus will be on making them comfortable in the office. You will meet your dentist and hygienist. The dentist may use puppets or models to explain good brushing to your child. Each step of the checkup should be explained and the tools should be demonstrated to alleviate anxiety. This first visit is important to making your child comfortable at the dentist.