It is important to teach your children good oral hygiene habits as early as possible to ensure they carry those habits into adulthood. While most children have a full set of baby teeth by their third birthday, experts recommend your child have his or her first dental appointment for pediatric dental treatment when the first tooth comes in or by the first birthday. The appointment will go smoothly if you know what to expect.
It Begins With a Greeting
On the day of your child’s appointment, his or her dentist will make introductions and use age-appropriate vocabulary to tell you and your son or daughter what to expect during the appointment. The introduction should include a quick introduction to the tools that will be used and reassurance that your child can sit on your lap during the procedure.
Learning How to Brush
Once your child becomes comfortable, the dentist will use finger puppets or other kid-friendly props to teach him or her how to properly brush teeth. An explanation about the importance of drinking water and eating healthy foods is also important.
Next, the dentist will clean your child’s teeth with a rotary toothbrush. The staff should provide your child with goggles or other eye protection in case of dropped tools or sprays of water or toothpaste.
Finally, the dentist will show your child how the sucking straw works and then use it to remove any excess toothpaste and saliva. At the end of the appointment, your son or daughter will likely be allowed to choose a prize such as a sticker or small toy. This will show them that going to the dentist ends with a reward.
If your child has his or her first tooth or is about to turn one, contact Dr. David McIntyre, a family dentist in Kyle, TX, who is experienced at helping children of all ages.