Your child’s primary or baby teeth are just as important as his or her permanent ones. Healthy and strong baby teeth are vital in helping your child chew food and for speech development. A newborn usually has around 20 primary teeth developing inside the gums. Around 6 months old, the child’s first teeth begin to show up. These are usually the front two upper or lower teeth. By the age of 3, all his or her primary 20 teeth usually have erupted.
Experts recommend that your child’s first dental visit should take place when his or her first tooth shows up, but before he or she reaches one year of age. While it may seem too soon, remember that baby teeth can get cavities too. Starting early in taking care of your child’s dental health is a good practice you will not regret.
Before you visit the pediatric dentist, be prepared by making sure you have your child’s medical record as the dentist will appreciate being informed on this. Scheduling your appointment in the morning may also be a good idea since kids are usually more active and energized at the start of the day. If you have a toddler or an older child, prepare him or her by letting your child know what to expect and why it is necessary to visit a dentist. Make it a fun and exciting trip for you both!
On the Day of the First Visit
The first dental check-up is generally fast yet informative. During the visit, the dentist may ask you to sit in the dental chair and hold their child during the exam. If your child is a toddler or older, you may be asked to wait in the reception area. The dentist will begin to examine your child’s mouth to make sure that the jaw and teeth are developing in the way that they should. He or she may also check for any decay or cavity or other potential oral concerns. After the dentist examines your child, he or she will clean the teeth. This is also the time when the dentist will give you some advice and tips for your child’s daily oral care. Do not hesitate to ask too if you have any questions or concerns like teething, thumb sucking, among others.
We at Kidsmile recommend bringing your child to his or her dentist every 6 months. This will allow for general monitoring of your child’s teeth development, the prompt treatment of any dental problem, and just to establish your child’s comfort level in regularly seeing the dentist.
Every child has his or her own oral development and dental health needs. But practicing preventive care in partnership with your child’s dentist can save time, tears, and more importantly, teeth!
Your Baby’s First Dental Visit, Mouth Healthy by the American Dental Association (https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/babies-and-kids/first-dental-visit)