Young children generally have anxiety when it comes to going to the dentist, usually fueled by older siblings or other kids they know from school. At Halonen Family Dentistry, we take extra measures to make your children’s first appointment is a positive experience that will prepare them for a life of healthy dental practices that will maintain a healthy smile and prevent tooth decay. In today’s post, we will discuss steps you can take to alleviate your child’s anxiety about visiting the dentist for the first time.
When Should Children Visit the Dentist for the First Time?
According to recommendations from the Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, children should visit a dentist for the first time by their first birthday or when their first tooth comes in. Once your children have had their first visit, they should schedule visits every six months the way that adults do. Not only are these visits important to identify potential dental issues before they get out of hand, but your children will also learn from a young age how to properly brush and floss their teeth to maintain good oral hygiene. More importantly, by getting your children used to visiting the dentist at a young age, they will not feel anxiety whenever they need to visit the dentist. As a result, your children won’t be resistant to dental treatments.
How Can I Prepare my Children for a Successful First Visit?
You, as a parent, have a key role in preparing your child for their first dental visit. Scheduling your appointment in the morning when your child is still fresh and alert, as they may be tired later in the day, which can make cooperation difficult. You can also use books, songs, or other media that offer a positive outlook on the experience going to the dentist. Not only will this ease their fears, but it will also help you instill clear expectations, so they know exactly what is in store when they visit the dentist.
What Can my Children Expect During the First Dental Visit?
Before the appointment evaluation begins, you will have the opportunity to address any concerns you have about your child’s dental health with the dentist. Not only will the dentist be able to address your concerns, but the dentist will also provide a thorough explanation of what the examination will include. This initial appointment will focus on making the child feel comfortable in the office and making sure they understand how to properly care for their teeth. Contact us to schedule your child’s initial dental appointment.