It is recommended that a child’s first visit to a dental practitioner between the ages of 6 months and 1 year, or when the first tooth erupts. This is a critical checkup to ensure that your baby’s mouth has no existing or looming problems. Subsequent visits can be scheduled at one-year intervals, or at the ages of 2 and 3 years, after which they can be every 6 months depending on your kid’s dentist recommendations.
The First Appointment
Pediatric dentists seek to fulfill many key functions with regard to the child’s dental and oral health. Their primary functions emphasize the importance of proper care and maintenance of baby teeth because they play a critical role in facilitating proper speech, good chewing habits, and also hold space for the permanent teeth to grow into.
As the first teeth begin to emerge, the dentist can assess your child’s oral health and ensure that new teeth develop normally, and then keep track of growth and development in subsequent visits in order to anticipate dental concerns and intervene in a timely manner before they worsen.
But the first visit is largely meant to familiarize your child with being in the dentist’s office and comfortable in the dental chair to prevent unnecessary fear or anxiety in subsequent visits. The first visit focuses on showing your child the fun aspects of a dental checkup. For instance, the child may sit on your lap and rise in the dentist’s chair, after which they can do it on their own. Next, if your child is having fun, the dentist may proceed to counting the teeth or introducing your child to the common dental tools.
Even as these fun activities going on, the pediatric dentist will still be able to check your child’s mouth and provide instruction on how to ensure optimal oral health for your child.
Before the first visit (or even during subsequent visits), you should prepare a list of questions and concerns that you have about the oral health of your child. Your dentist in San Dimas will automatically provide you with some basic oral care education, so you will leave the office well-informed anyway.