Your Child First Dental Visit
When should you bring your child for the first dental visit? Start early! We recommend that a child first seen by a dentist by the age of 1-2 years old or 6 months to 1 year after the first baby tooth erupted. Why so early? We encourage parents to be proactive about their child oral health. Children can get cavities as soon as their baby teeth erupted.
Preparing your child
Prepare your kid by giving him or her some general idea what to expect in a dental visit. Practise mouth opening at home to get them ready is an useful trick. You can also introduce dentist or dental chair by showing them books or video to build the confidence and excitement.
Dad and mom get nervous too. Make an appointment before bringing your kid to dentist to reduce waiting time. Prepare the child’s identity document such as MyKid or birth cert to faciliate the registration purpose. If your child has medical condition or drug allergy, bring along the necessary details. Parents can prepare a list of concerns and question to ask the dentist.
Remember to stay calm if you have dental anxiety. Do not relate your negative impression towards dental treatment to your kid. Your feeling towards dental visit can affect your child first impression too.
What to expect
Every child reacts differently in their first dental visit. The dentist will examine the teeth and gum or carry out simple teeth cleaning. We will show you the correct brushing technique and advise you on the need of fluoride. Usually we try to keep first dental visit short and sweet. Don’t worry if your child get nervous or cried, our experienced team understand this is a new experience. It is completely normal.
10 – 24 months – Children are usually attached to their parents. Parents might need to sit on dental chair and have the child sit on their lap for dental check up.
2 to 3 years – Some children can be briefly seperated from their parents and sit alone on dental chair.
> 4 years – Most children should be sit alone on the dental chair and complete the treatment without parents in the room.
Hot Tips for Smooth Visit
- Try to avoid appointment near usual nap time. Choose the right time when your child is well rested and cooperative. Eg. morning
- Make sure your child is not hungry. Give light meal and ensure they brush their teeth before the visit.
- Make the first visit fun and happy. Do not expect all treatment to be done in the first visit.
- Reward the child if they behave well in the first visit. Eg. toys or snack.