With all the chaos that kids bring to our lives, it’s hard to keep everything straight. There is always something to worry about. Oral health is no exception. We think we know how to care for teeth but like every other category, it’s a completely different puzzle for children. Once they start popping teeth through you can’t help but wonder when you need to seek a dentist’s help.
When to Schedule the Appointment
This might sound crazy to you but kids should see their dentist around one year of age. It seems early, but at one year most kids have been popping teeth for about six months. Because kids lose those first teeth, some of us think it shouldn’t be a concern. Baby teeth serve a great purpose in helping our kids to expand their diet and get their mouth ready for their permanent teeth. It’s important to keep them healthy.
What to Expect
The first visit is really an informal one. Your dentist will want to make sure your child is comfortable so they won’t throw too much at them. Think of the appointment as a meet and greet with a little checkup. The staff will do a short cleaning of your child’s teeth and possibly a fluoride treatment. Then the dentist will do a quick examination and answer any questions that you might have.
The dentist will want to examine the gum line, the jaw, the bite, and look for any signs of decay. With this examination, your dentist will want to discuss hygiene habits. Taking care of kids’ teeth can be a lot different than taking care of our own so your dentist will help guide you through what to do. Don’t be surprised if topics like thumb sucking, toddler teething, and your child’s diet come up as well.
Tips to Make it a Positive Experience
- Take your child to visit the office BEFORE their appointment. Whether it’s a tour or having them tag along to your own appointment, it’s important to get them familiar with the environment.
- Plan your day around the dentist. The last thing your kid needs is a stressed-out parent trying to stick to a busy schedule.
- Face your own fears. Kids are way too good at picking up on our own emotions. If you are nervous about the appointment, chances are they will be too. Do whatever you need to do to keep the positivity flowing.
- Be a cheerleader. Make sure your kids know that you are proud of them and encourage them to be brave.
- Prepare them for the appointment. Talk to your kids about the appointment, play pretend with them, read books, whatever works for you.
At Eagle Rock Dental Care we are here to help ease the stress of these situations. Contact us with any and all of your questions! We pride ourselves on the importance of family. We will take care of yours like they are our own. Schedule your appointment online or call any one of our three local offices.