As a Tampa dental office that serves many families, we see many young patients for their very first dental visit. We usually recommend that a child’s first dental visit be scheduled by his or her first birthday. In fact, once the first tooth emerges, at around six months old, parents need to be mindful of teaching their children good oral health habits, including regularly visiting the dentist.
Starting your child early on a habit of visiting the dentist will likely lead to a lifetime of good oral care habits. Early dental visits will help your child to feel comfortable with the dental office, and will reduce anxiety and fear, making for stress-free visits in the future.
To prepare for your child’s first dental visit, review with your dentist all of the procedures of the first appointment. Tell your child all about what will happen so there are no surprises. Be prepared for whatever reaction your child may have. If your child is very young, he or she may have trouble sitting still. If they are old enough, tell your child that visiting the dentist is a sign of being a “big kid” and express your pride in their growth. Be sure to bring along to the appointment any records of your child’s medical history.
First dental appointments tend to be more like introductory visits to acquaint your child with the dentist. If your child is frightened, uncomfortable, or uncooperative don’t worry! A visit can always be rescheduled. Patience and reassuring communication with your child are very important when this occurs.
At Weninger Dentistry, we do all that we can to make sure that our patients, of all ages, are comfortable with their dental visits.