First Dental Visit

According to Australian dental association, it is time for a dental visit when your baby’s first tooth becomes visible or they reach 12 months old – whichever comes first. If you notice anything you think is out of the ordinary before this time it’s better to be safe than sorry, so book an appointment straight away.

What to expect for the first dental visit?

Your little one might fuss during their dental visit. This is the same as when they might fuss at a restaurant, or the hairdresser, or anywhere else you’d rather they were quiet. Don’t worry, this is completely normal and dental team is trained to make sure your baby is as comfortable as possible during their exam. Crying and screaming doesn’t mean your baby is in pain and the dentist will always be as gentle as possible.

Just remember – this is a momentous occasion! It is a milestone in your life as a parent and should be remembered, just like a first hair cut or their first day at school. Take photos and write about the experience.

Use the first dental visit to become well informed about your child’s oral health. Your dentist will take a full medical history and look at factors such as your child’s overall health and development.

Your dentist will discuss and check:

• Teething
• Brushing techniques
• Bite (how your child’s teeth will come together)
• Soft tissues such as gums and cheeks
• Habits such as thumb sucking
• Risk of decay and how to prevent it
• Prevention of trauma to your child’s mouth
• Nutritional advice

THE 5 DO’S FOR FIRST DENTAL VISITS

1. Make it fun and enjoyable experience for your baby.
2. Introduce the dentist as “tooth fairy’s friend” or tell them “they are going on a ride on a special chair”
3. Take photos and write about the experience.
4. Bring your baby to your or other family member’s check up appointments.

THE 5 DON’TS FOR FIRST DENTAL VISITS

1. Don’t tell your child to be brave (they already are)
2. Don’t bribe your child
3. Don’t tell your child that it won’t hurt (or it will)
4. Don’t use the dentist as a deterrent or punishment
5. Don’t be anxious yourself
6. Don’t worry if your baby cries a little.