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When Should I Schedule My Child’s First Dental Visit?

You notice your child’s first tooth starting to come in. It’s very small and not that discernible, but it’s there nonetheless.

You have plenty of questions such as, “When should a baby have their first dental visit?” Or, “how am I supposed to take care of my child’s growing teeth?” After further thought, you have decided that it is in your child’s best interest to visit the dentist.

If you are wondering when your child’s first dental visit should be and what to expect, then keep on reading.

When To Take Your Child To The Dentist

The recommended age children should have their first visit to the dentist is within 6 months of the eruption of their first tooth.

Or, about 12 months at the latest. Don’t wait until a tooth problem arises before you take your child to the dentist. It is crucial that you start your child at an early age to get them used to regular dental visits.

Like adults, take your child for a dental exam every six months to maintain their oral health.

What to Expect

The main purpose of your child’s first dental visit is to help them feel comfortable with the dentist.

Usually, the first visit lasts around 30 to 45 minutes. Sometimes, the visit might include a full exam of the teeth, gums, jaws, bite, and oral tissues. But this is dependent on your child’s age.

This exam checks for their teeth’ growth and development. If there is any buildup plaque, tartar, or stains, the dentist might do a gentle cleaning and teeth polishing.

Best Ways to Prepare For You and Your Child

In terms of appointments, it is best to schedule them in the morning when the children are alert and fresh.

They are more likely to be in a good mood and more accepting of new experiences. Before your visit to the dentist, prepare your child by giving them a general idea of what to expect.

Explain the importance of going to the dentist. Build excitement, but also be understanding.

During the appointment, discuss your questions and concerns with the dentist. If you suspect a problem before the appointment, ensure that you bring it up during the visit.

From then, the dentist can provide insight on infant feeding practices, teething, pacifier habits, mouth cleaning, and so on.

Keep in mind that as a parent, your support is paramount to your child’s experience.

Be cautious not to transfer your dental fears and anxieties to your child. Children can pick up their parents’ anxieties.

To which, the children can become anxious as well, resulting in not a good time.

Where To Go

In most cases, parents take their children to their own dentist.

Going this route is often a good choice, especially if your dentist has experience with young children. If you are looking for another alternative, consider taking your child to a pediatric family dentist.

These experts have additional training in caring for children’s oral health. They understand children’s behaviors and know how to make young patients feel comfortable.

Get Ready for Their First Dental Visit

It is important to take your child to their first dental visit before any problem arises.

The visit to the dentist does not have to be a stressful time for you and your child. Having the right dentist to guide you can make for an easier visit.

For more helpful tips like these, check out the rest of our articles!

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