First visit to a Dentist

First Dental visit

IDA recommends that your child's first trip to a dentist must occur six months after his or her first tooth erupts to ensure a lifetime of healthy smiles. Taking your child to the dentist at a young age is the best way to prevent problems such as tooth decay and can help parents learn how to clean their child's teeth and identify his or her fluoride needs.

After all, decay can occur as soon as teeth appear. Dentist can examine the development of the child's mouth, identify any problems (such as baby bottle tooth decay or teething irritations). It's important to fix decayed baby teeth so the surrounding teeth don't become infected. Cavities that are not fixed can lead to painful abscesses, early tooth loss, as well as the loss of spacing needed to be reserved for the incoming permanent teeth.

This leads to a lifetime of good oral care habits and acclimates your child to the dental clinic, thereby reducing anxiety and fear, which will make for plenty of stress-free visits in the future. Typically, the first baby tooth is lost between age 5 and 6, with children continuing to lose their baby teeth until age 12 or 13. Many people are under the impression that, because these baby teeth will eventually fall out, there is no need to visit a dentist before that time.


Prepare child and yourself

Before the visit, ask the dentist about the procedures of the first appointment so there are no surprises. Plan a course of action for either reaction your child may exhibit – cooperative or non- cooperative. Very young children may be fussy and not sit still. Talk to your child about what to expect and build excitement as well as understanding about the upcoming visit. Bring with you to the appointment any records of your child's complete medical history.


Early Dental Visits Helps Prevent Future Problems

  • The earlier the child visits the dentist, the better it is. Parents are taught about nutrition and the growth and development of the child and their teeth.
  • While age-1 visits are recommended for all children, they could prove especially beneficial for children who drink liquids other than water. Acids and sugars in juices, formulas and breast milk can all lead to decay. Visiting the dentist at age 1 helps spot early signs of decay and cavities in baby teeth. It could also help put a major dent in childhood oral disease, which often results in lifelong problems that are painful, expensive and not just limited to the mouth.
  • The age-1 visit won't just involve the child – parents also participate, typically holding the child while the dentist takes a look inside the child's mouth. The dentist will then spend time discussing proper eating and tooth-care habits with parents to help head the child in the right direction, so future dental visits aren't so scary.


Build a positive attitude

Parents must have a positive attitude will empower a child to a lifetime of positive dental experiences. Parent with severe dental anxieties should have make every effort not to pass those fears to the child. Fearful parents can actually create a nervous and anxious child.

Most children are not only comfortable but even curious during a first dental exam and cavity-filling procedures. However, a child may become problematic when the accompanying parent hints of fear or anxiety and relays incorrect assumptions about procedures.

Parents' presence is support or the child not only during the first exam but until the age of 4, for restorative treatments. Pretreatment meetings with a dentist provide directions and guidelines for the parentabout the needed treatment for the child. Parents must learn how to provide moral support and to maintain a low, calm voice.