A common question many parents have is, "When should I take my child to see a dentist for the first time?"
Answer: To get your child familiar with the dental environment it’s a good idea to start bringing them with you for your cleaning appointments starting at age two. We call these appointments “happy visits."
Another way to remember when to bring children to the dentist is the rule: "First visit by first birthday or first tooth."
At these appointments, parents will get a chance to talk with the Doctor or hygienist about preventing early childhood cavities and find out their child's risk of developing them. It is a good time for the whole family to learn how to manage diet and oral home care to prevent problems before they start.
What To Expect at the Office
At the first visit, you should expect the dentist or hygienist to:
- Review your child's history
- Respond to your questions and concerns
- Talk with you about your child's overall oral health, including:
- Teeth Bite (how your child's teeth will come together)
- Soft tissues such as gums and cheeks
- Oral habits such as sucking
- Cavity risk factors such as diet, hygiene practices, fluoride use and whether others in the family have had cavities
- Demonstrate how to clean your child's teeth and give you a chance to practice
- Make specific recommendations about home care, including hygiene, diet, and use of fluorides (including toothpaste)
- Suggest a schedule for follow-up care