Updated: Jan 14
Parenthood is a joyous experience. That being said, it is also often filled with confusion and apprehension, especially when it comes to your little one's health.
One question we get from parents a lot - How do I prepare my child for their first dental visit?
This is an excellent question, and if this is on your mind, we are here to help you. Kids tend to fear the unknown, and new people and places tend to feed that fear. It is always a great idea to take the necessary steps to help comfort your little one during their first visit to Urbana Pediatric Dentistry.
When should you take your child for their first dental visit?
Let us begin by answering this fundamental question. Children start to get their milk teeth (baby teeth) around six months of age. According to the American Dental Association of Pediatric Dentists, a child's first dental visit should happen immediately or within six months after the first tooth's eruption. In other words, your child's first visit should happen no later than their first birthday.
The follow-up question is usually - Isn't that a little early?
Well, not really, as this is an ideal period for the first visit. It sets a foundation for good oral health. It allows the pediatric dentist to analyze the child's growth patterns and health of the oral cavity.
What to expect from your child’s first dental visit?
During your first visit at Urbana Pediatric Dentistry, Dr. Dina will first perform a thorough oral examination. She will guide you about proper oral hygiene methods like tooth brushing and flossing, teething, pacifiers, and infant feeding practices. She may also perform kids' teeth cleaning and preventive treatments like fluoride application if needed. You will also be given information about different childhood dental disorders like baby bottle tooth decay and gum diseases, prevention, and treatment. This information will enable you to understand and actively participate in your child's oral and overall health.
How to prepare your child for their first visit to Urbana Pediatric Dentistry?
Now that you know what to expect let us jump to the real question. First dental visits are often intimidating, but they can be pleasant and smooth with a bit of preparation. This section will discuss how you can prepare your child and yourself for the first dental visit at Urbana Pediatric Dentistry.
If you have any questions or doubts about your child's oral health and dental visit, please feel free to talk to us. Our team of excellent and friendly dental professionals will ensure all your questions are answered.
Sometimes, parents can have different feelings towards dentists and dental treatments. If you have a bad memory of your dental visits, it is always a good idea to let your child's dentist know about it.
Years of clinical studies and observations have shown that parents can pass their anxiety regarding dentists and dental treatments to their children.
Therefore, it is crucial to ensure that you are not letting your child see your apprehension. If you have had a negative past dental experience, please avoid talking about it to your child. This can lead to an acquired fear in your child, making them fearful of dental treatment compromising their oral health. Whenever you talk about dentists and dental treatments, make sure you have a positive and fun approach. Remember, good oral health is key to overall health and well-being, and dental appointments form an integral part of a child's healthcare.
Talk to your little one about the dental visit
It is always recommended that you let your child know about the dental visit. However, please don't do it too soon! Kids have wild imagination power, and sometimes, it can be backfire. It is better to not tell your child about the dental visit too far in advance as it can be a potential cause of anxiety for them. A good rule is to talk to your child and let them know about the visit on the morning of the scheduled appointment.
Schedule the first visit wisely
If possible, schedule your child's first dental visit in the morning. It is seen that morning appointments work best for children. Children are usually more relaxed, calm, and receptive to new experiences in the morning. It can help them adjust to the environment of a dental clinic better.
Watch videos about dental visits with your kid.
Children tend to imitate their favorite cartoons. When a child sees a cartoon character happily going in for dental visits and getting treatments like kids teeth cleaning, they will most likely pick up on that, which creates a positive attitude. You can find many videos on the internet about dental visits that your child will enjoy, which can be used to model positive behavior. This also builds excitement in the child and makes the visit pleasant.
Let them bring a friend.
If your child has a favorite toy or a stuffed animal they love, bring them along. They are your child's best friend and will help them find comfort and familiarity in a new space. You can also find some cuddly bears to keep for your little one company in the play section of the clinic.
Compliment your child
If your child is scared and anxious or doesn't comply with the dentist, it is okay. At UPD, we have seen it all and are prepared. Tell your child how brave they have been and how proud you are of them. This positive outlook can calm an anxious child and makes them more comfortable for future dental visits.
Lastly, call us and schedule an appointment at Urbana Pediatric Dentistry and allow us to take care of your little one's pearly whites. Be it a kids teeth cleaning or cavity filling; we will be there for your child's every oral healthcare need!
If you have any additional questions about your child's oral hygiene, please feel free to contact us at Urbana Pediatric Dentistry. To learn more about Urbana Pediatric Dentistry visit our About Us page. For more tips and information feel free to Contact Us and follow us on social media on Instagram @urbanapediatricdentistry and Facebook @urbanapediatricdentistry.