Your Child's First Dental Visit

Your Child's First Dental Visit

Posted by Reading Pediatric Dentistry on May 3 2023, 12:19 PM

As a parent, you know your child best. If you notice any signs of a dental issue, you should schedule an appointment for your child as soon as possible.

When Should My Child See the Dentist for the First Time?

Around the age of one, you and your child should begin to see your dentist regularly for cleanings and checkups. According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, children should visit a dentist by their first birthday. This visit can establish your child’s oral health baseline and identify potential early dental concerns. Regular visits every six months can help to prevent tooth decay, as well as identify problems in the earliest stages when they are the easiest to treat. If you miss these early appointments, it can lead to more problems down the road that can be difficult and expensive to fix. These issues may include cavities, gum disease, orthodontic issues that may require braces later on, or other oral conditions that require extensive treatment to correct.

Baby bottle tooth decay is another condition that can affect young children who fall asleep while nursing or drinking from a bottle filled with milk, formula, juice, or other sugary liquids. This condition occurs when a child’s teeth are frequently exposed to sugar-containing fluids for long periods of time during sleep. Repeated exposure causes plaque to build up on the teeth. If left untreated, this can lead to multiple cavities and other complications. Ask your pediatric dentist about ways you can prevent this condition for your child. This may include using a training cup for their bedtime drinks instead of a bottle or even switching to water instead.

Why Is It Important for Children to Visit a Dentist?

Your child’s first visit to the dentist is important for a number of reasons, including:

  • Getting your child in the habit of visiting the dentist regularly from a young age will help to ensure that their teeth and gums remain healthy throughout their life.
  • After the first visit, your dentist will be able to monitor the development of your child’s teeth and jaw. If necessary, they can provide advice on how to correct any damaging habits, such as thumb sucking or teeth grinding, before they cause lasting damage.
  • When your child’s teeth are first coming in, they can be susceptible to tooth decay. By getting an early start on dental care and investing in professional cleanings and fluoride treatments, you can help keep their teeth as healthy as possible as they grow.

You are also likely to receive recommendations regarding diet and oral care for your child, and you will also be able to ask questions and get advice about how to care for your child’s teeth at home.

What Should I Expect At the First Dental Visit?

Your child’s first dental visit doesn’t have to be scary! In fact, it’s usually quite the opposite. Children are generally very curious about the dentist and excited about being in the chair. Here are a few things you can expect at the first appointment:

  • The pediatric dentist will ask about your child’s health history, including allergies and any medical concerns. They will also ask about your child’s diet, oral hygiene routine, and habits, such as pacifier use and thumb-sucking. It is important to answer these questions as accurately as possible so the pediatric dentist has a complete picture of your child’s health.
  • Parents can sit in the treatment room with their children to make them feel more comfortable. Some dentists also provide toys and other items to keep children entertained while they wait.
  • After your child is checked in, they will undergo an oral health screening. During this screening, the pediatric dentist will look for signs of tooth decay and any other issues. X-rays may also be taken to check for cavities that may not be visible to the naked eye.
  • If your child is due for a cleaning, this will be done first. Then, the dentist will do an examination to look for signs of decay or other problems. Afterward, they will map out a treatment plan for any issues that were found during the examination. This may include fluoride treatments, sealants, fillings, and other procedures.
  • After the exam and cleaning are finished, your dentist will likely schedule their next checkup. They will go over how to care for their smile at home, review good brushing and flossing tips, and provide education on healthy habits like avoiding sugary foods and beverages.

Visit us at 3895 W 7800 S #203, West Jordan, UT 84088. Contact us at (801) 282-6901 or visit our website to book an appointment with us. 

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3895 W 7800 S #203, West Jordan, UT 84088

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Phone: (801) 282-6901