According to a recent survey, more than half of all parents waited until their child was three-years-old or older before their first dentist visit. The problem is, by the age of three, the bad habits that cause cavities are already in place and are hard to break!
A good rule of thumb to follow when considering the right time to take your child to the dentist is “By First Tooth or First Birthday”.
The American Association of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that you bring your child to the dentist by the age one or when they get their first tooth! By seeing kids early, we can set them up for a lifetime of good dental health.
The first dental visit is usually short and sweet, you and your child will have a tour of the office, meet the hygienist and dentist, do an exam and we will answer any questions you have. We offer lap exams, where the patient sits on mom or dad’s lap for their exam. We check their teeth, their bite, and make sure everything is looking healthy. We also spend time educating parents on healthy dental habits and establishing a dental “home” for your child.
Use positive language! Avoid using harsh words such as drills and shots as we don’t use those words in the office.
Roll play and read! Read books about going to the dentist and play dentist; teach your child to open wide so the dentist can see their pretty teeth.
We have toys and TVs in the office but feel free to bring your child’s favorite comfort toy for support!
Plan a treat for after the visit.
Stay relaxed. Sometimes it is easy to project your fear and anxiety of the dentist on your child. If you are cheerful and calm, your child will feed off that!
Coming to a new office can be scary for a little one, talk them through every step – from check in, to the exam, and the prize box at the end!