We had a busy September with many parents taking advantage of the school holidays to bring their kids for their dental visit.
A common question often asked by parents was “When should my child first see the dentist?”. It seemed that parents are given conflicting advice from different sources, and, often thought their child has all their baby teeth without any troubles, so no need to see the dentist.
The Australasian Academy of Paediatric Dentistry recommends that the first dental visit should occur after the first tooth erupts or before their first birthday. The earlier the visit the better it is. It is important that your child has a dental check-up during their second year.
The first visit is about creating a fun and enjoyable experience for your child, and this often involves letting them have a ride in the dental chair and having their teeth counted. We may not get necessary cooperation to look inside their mouth on the first trip, that’s ok, this is completely normal.
At Alexandra Dental Clinic, the focus of the visit is more informative in nature. It mainly involves discussing with the parents about your child’s overall health and good oral habits, what to expect as they grow, establishing likelihood of your child developing decay in their baby teeth (dental caries risk) and preventing such occurrence. Although, the baby teeth are lost by the age of thirteen, they are very important for your child’s jaw development, function and overall health.
To prepare for the first visit, we ask parents to talk about the dentist using child friendly terms such as “riding in the blue chair’ and “visit to the tooth fairy’s friend.” It is best to avoid telling your past or bad experience as it can be discouraging. Often, we encourage you to role play at home such as counting teeth on them or on their favourite teddy bear. Of course, nothing beats watching Peppa Pig visit the dentist.
Peppa Pig visits the dentist