Family Magazine

That First Trip to the Dentist

By Jean Campbell

Most of us check with our dentist as to when we need to bring our young child for his or her first dental check up.

In checking in with the American Dental Association, I found out that they recommend a young child be seen by a dentist as early as 6 to 12 months of age. Pediatric dentists also support earlier rather than later as a first visit, suggesting no later than one year of age.

The reason for an early exam…to insure that baby teeth will grow in strong and without cavities.

During the first dental visit with a Pediatric dentist, he or she will instruct parents on knowing how to brush a baby’s teeth or swab gums in a baby’s mouth, prior to the infant getting a set of teeth.

Dentists encourage preparing a child for that first visit when he or she will have a complete oral exam by:

1. Bringing a young child to the dental office before the day of an exam to familiarize him or her with the office and the people who work there.

2. Try to schedule an appointment in the morning when a child is usually rested from a night’s sleep.

3. Describe the dentist to a child as a friend whose job it is to keep his or her teeth healthy and strong and nice looking.

4. Explain what happens during an examination.

5. Speak positively about going to the dentist. Don’t look worried or concerned when you are talking about visiting the dentist.

   


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