This is the question most parents have, particularly new parents, when should I take my child to the dentist for their first visit? If you are a new parent and aren’t sure about the answer to this question, please continue reading as we explore this topic further.
It is generally recommended that you bring your child to their first dentist visit 6 months after their first tooth has appeared (in a process called “erupting”).
Their first visit will usually only be short. During this period, the dentist will perform a quick checkup to examine your child’s bite, possibilities of tooth decay, and conditions of their gums, jaw, and oral tissues.
The dentist may also clean your child’s teeth and offer you tips on how to maintain proper oral hygiene. This is also the time in which you can begin completing medical and health records for future visits and references.
As such, make sure that you come with all the necessary documents or information. Some topics that your dentist may discuss with you on your child’s first dental visit include the following:
1). Oral hygiene practices
2). Fluoride needs
3). Oral habits such as thumb sucking, lip sucking, and tongue thrusting
4). Teething and other developmental milestones
5). Mouth cleaning
6). Baby bottle tooth decay
7). Pacifier habits
8). Feeding practices for infants
9). Scheduling for future check-ups
There are often questions about whether your child should visit a pediatric dentist or a regular dentist.
The main difference between the two is that pediatric dentists have additional training outside of dental school to help learn more about child behaviour, their growth and development, and how to manage and treat the developing teeth of a child.
Does that mean that your child should ONLY visit a pediatric dentist? Well, not necessarily.
Both types of dentists can address the dental needs of your child just the same. However, if your child does have special needs, then you can opt to go to a pediatric dentist. Nonetheless, they are both capable of facilitating the normal oral procedures for your child.
Visits to the dentist can often seem daunting for your child, especially if it is their first time. One helpful tip is to try scheduling their dentist appointments in the morning. This is so that your child feels refreshed and energised on their first visit.
If your child is at the preschool age or older, then try to bring awareness to what they can expect from the visit. Make this awareness exciting for them so that they aren’t afraid of their first and subsequent visits.
It is on your child’s first visit that they can start feeling comfortable with the dentist. As such, make sure to ease any discomfort or uncertainty that they may have.
Generally, on the first visit, the dentist may recommend when your future visits should be scheduled.
Normally, children should visit the dentist every 6 months just like adults. Depending on the recommendation fo your dentist, however, visits can take place every 3 months, which can also encourage your child to develop more confidence with the dentist.
More frequent visits can also regularly monitor the condition of your child’s teeth as they continue to grow and develop. However, as mentioned, your dentist will be the one to recommend the frequency of visits.
As a general rule, it is recommended that the first visit of your child to the dentist occurs around 6 months after their first tooth starts erupting.
First visits only take about 30-45 minutes in which the dentist will do a general oral examination and even the occasional general cleaning.
Dentists can also discuss topics with you on future oral developmental situations and recommendations on how your child can maintain proper oral hygiene.
Are you searching for a dental clinic in the Cranbourne area for your child? If so, then look no further than Shine Dental Group.
To learn more about our services or make an appointment, please contact us today on (03) 5995 9789 or check our profile via find a dentist near me.