Your child’s first dental visit needs to be a positive one. Why? Because, it can not only affect your child’s oral care, but it will have an impact on future visits. Many adults suffer anxiety when it comes to visiting a dentist. Much of this has to do with past experiences, or perhaps the initial visit. You want your child to be comfortable during the first and all future dental visits.
One of the areas Harford County Dentistry focusses on for children is the prevention and treatment of cavities. According to the American Dental Association, over 50% of first-graders and 80% of 17-year-olds have cavities. While there are many things, parents can do to ensure the health of their children’s teeth, one of the best ways to prevent cavities and tooth decay in children can be through regular visits to the dentist and routine dental cleanings. Dr. Melissa Elliott and our compassionate dental care team will help to teach your children the benefits of oral hygiene. Through early visits to the dentist and healthy brushing and flossing routines, you can help keep your children’s smiles healthy.
Dr. Elliott and her team will also provide a wealth of information on:
- oral health from pregnancy to adults over 60
- best products to maintain oral health wellness
- oral symptoms and best resolutions
- mouth healthy practices for children and adults
When to Make the First Dental Appointment
Most children get all of their baby teeth (20) and will have a full set of teeth in place by the age of three (3). Generally, a baby’s front four (4) teeth usually come through the gums at about six (6) months of age, although some children don’t have their first tooth until 12 or 14 months. As recommended by the ADA, the best time to schedule the first dental visit is within six (6) months after the first tooth has appeared, but no later than the first birthday.
What to Expect
During your child’s first visit, you can expect the dentist to:
- Inspect for oral injuries, cavities or other problems.
- Let you know if your child is at risk of developing tooth decay.
- Clean your child’s teeth and provide tips for daily care.
- Discuss teething, pacifier use, or finger/thumb-sucking habits.
- Discuss treatment, if needed, and schedule the next check-up.
It is important that parents and guardians set good examples and teach children proper oral hygiene habits early. Good oral health contributes to the overall health of a child, encourages positive self-image, and improves feelings of achievement.