Blog / Pediatric Dentistry

Preparing for Your Child’s First Dentist Appointment

April 5, 2018

Young girl smiling at camera

As parents, we know that you have a lot on your plate. Whether it is diapers to change or mealtimes to plan, parenting is a demanding and constant job. With that in mind, we would like to make at least one aspect of your life a little easier – dental visits. To this end, we have identified some of the most common questions that parents have about their child’s first dental appointment.

When Should Children Have Their First Dentist Appointment?

Most parents are surprised to learn that dental appointments should begin when children are still fairly young. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that you bring children in for an appointment by their first birthday or when their first tooth appears.

What Happens at This Appointment?

At this first visit, we will start out by discussing your child’s health history, oral habits (like teething or sucking), and any factors that might increase his/her risk of developing cavities.

Your child gets to remain on your lap throughout the procedure, making it more comfortable for both of you

Then, it is time for the examination. While the examination is thorough, it is far less intense than an adult exam. For one thing, your child gets to remain on your lap throughout the procedure, making it more comfortable for both of you.

Once we have examined your child’s mouth, a cleaning may be done and/or fluoride may be applied. However, this depends on your child’s age and needs.

Lastly, we will make sure that you understand everything you need to know in order to take great care of your child’s teeth at home. We will discuss brushing techniques, your child’s diet, the use of toothpaste and other fluorides, and what to expect in the months to come. Then, we will schedule an appointment for follow-up care.

What Tips Do You Have for Putting Children at Ease?

The most important thing that you can do as a parent is to approach dental visits with a good attitude. Unfortunately, many people have an aversion to the dentist. This fear and anxiety can be picked up by kids, causing them to feel extremely nervous about dental visits. So, a great attitude is our number one tip.

The other tip that we suggest is that if your child is older, you allow him/her to watch one of your dental appointments. This gives your kiddo an idea of what to expect which can alleviate some fears or concerns.

Why Should I Visit Dr. Petry & Dr. Walton for My Child’s First Dentist Appointment?

In our office we are proud to offer child-friendly dentistry. Many of us are parents ourselves, and we enjoy making your little ones feel welcome. In fact, a number of parents have told us that their children actually look forward to visiting us!

For one thing, our waiting room is warm and cozy. However, while you and your children will definitely find it inviting, you will not spend too much time in it. We make it a point not to overbook appointments, meaning that your child will not grow fidgety or anxious as a result of waiting too long to see our staff.

We also offer a number of amenities to make your family visit more enjoyable. Think along the lines of massage chairs, soothing music, personal TVs with headphones, and that all-around child favorite—goody bags!

How Can I Schedule an Appointment?

Scheduling an appointment with us is easy! Simply call us at 330.434.3485 or click here to request an appointment online.