Your child’s first visit.
Here are some “First Visit” tips:
- Take your child for a “preview” or online tour of the office.
- Read books with them about going to the dentist.
- Review with them what the dentist will be doing at the time of the first visit.
- Speak positively about your own dental experiences
The first “regular” dental visit should be just after your child’s third birthday. The first dental visit is usually short and involves very little treatment. We may ask the parent to sit in the dental chair and hold their child during the examination. The parent may also be asked to wait in the reception area during part of the visit so that a relationship can be built between your child and your dentist.
We will gently examine your child’s teeth and gums. X-rays may be taken to reveal decay and check on the progress of your child’s permanent teeth under the gums. Dr. McCormick will also evaluate adverse habits like thumb sucking. We may clean your child’s teeth and apply topical fluoride to help protect the teeth against decay. We will make sure your child is receiving adequate fluoride at home. Most important of all, we will review with you how to clean and care for your child’s teeth, and suggest a schedule for regular dental visits.
What should I tell my child about the first dental visit?
We suggest you prepare your child the same way that you would before their first haircut or trip to the shoe store. Your child’s reaction to his first visit to the dentist may surprise you.
The first baby teeth that come into the mouth are the two bottom front teeth. You will notice this when your baby is about 6-8 months old. Next to follow will be the 4 upper front teeth, and the remainder of your baby’s teeth will appear periodically. They will usually appear in pairs along the sides of the jaw until the child is about 2 1/2 years old.
At around 2 1/2 years old, your child should have all 20 teeth. Between the ages of 5 and 6 the first permanent teeth will begin to erupt. Some of the permanent teeth replace baby teeth and some don’t. Don’t worry if some teeth are a few months early or late, as all children are different and have different eruption patterns.
Baby teeth are vitally important as they not only hold space for permanent teeth, but are important for chewing, biting, speech, health and appearance.
For this reason it is important to maintain a healthy diet and daily oral hygiene. It is also important to restore them should they develop tooth decay.
Most of the time cavities are due to a diet high in sugary foods and a lack of proper homecare. Limiting sugar intake and brushing regularly can help prevent cavities.
At our office we are concerned with all aspects of preventative care. We use the latest in sealant technology to protect your child’s teeth. Sealants are restorations bonded to the chewing surfaces of back teeth prone to decay. This is just one of the ways we will set the foundation for your child’s lifetime of good oral health.