Taking your young child to the dentist for the first time can seem daunting. An experienced pediatric dentist is a fabulous way to introduce your child to oral care in a non-threatening and friendly environment. Pediatric dentists are specially trained professionals that love kids and love helping little ones get excited about their dental health. Read on to know what to expect and how to prepare both yourself and your child for your first visit to a pediatric dentist in York, PA.
What happens during a pediatric dentistry visit?
During your child’s first visit to a pediatric dentist, you can expect a warm and child-friendly environment aimed at making them feel at ease. Many pediatric dental offices are set up, especially for young patients. From toys in the waiting room to smaller instruments, a dentist specializing in pediatric dentistry provides a comfortable place for a child needing dental care. Pediatric dentists are experts at talking to and dealing with young patients. The entire dental team will introduce themselves to your little one, making them feel comfortable. The dentist and staff will often try to engage your child in friendly conversation to establish trust and build rapport.
Once your child is relaxed and comfortable, the staff will complete a comprehensive oral examination, gentle teeth cleaning, and possibly X-rays. Children are naturally curious, and a good pediatric dentist will often explain what they are doing and even show your child how the different oral tools work and what they do. The dentist will then follow up with you, the parent, to ensure you have a thorough understanding of your child’s oral health and development. If you have any questions, the dentist will take time to answer them and to address any concerns you may have. The dentist will provide personalized advice on oral hygiene, diet, and any potential treatments for your child, all the while prioritizing your child’s comfort and creating a positive introduction to dental care.
What age should my child first see a dentist?
Experts recommend taking children to the dentist around 12 months of when the first tooth comes in, or by about 18 months at the latest. At this first appointment, dentists can give you information on baby bottle tooth decay, infant feeding practices, mouth cleaning, teething, pacifier, and finger-sucking habits. The goal of the first appointment is to help your child become comfortable with dental visits. Our dentists are great at working quickly so that your child’s attention span is not taxed. The goal is to build a positive relationship between your child and dentistry.
How can I prepare my child?
Scheduling an appointment during your little one’s best hours is a good idea. An appointment that coincides with nap time is bound to be a challenge. Parents can prepare a preschooler or older child by giving him a general idea of what to expect and why it is important to go to the dentist. There are many books and shows featuring favorite TV characters that visit the dentist. Watching one of these shows together or reading a picture book about going to the dentist is a great way to prepare them for a visit and avoid unnecessary anxiety.
What should I do to be ready?
Be sure to think through any concerns you may have about your child’s oral health so you can discuss them with the dentist. Also, remember to stay calm. Many adults have anxiety about going to the dentist. Be careful not to relate those fears or dislikes to your child. Staying relaxed and positive about the visit will help your child to do the same.
Going to the dentist regularly should be a part of every child’s health routine. Parents can help facilitate a healthy relationship with the dentist for their child by encouraging good dental care at home, focusing on positive aspects of the visit, and making and keeping regularly spaced dental visits for their children.
A good pediatric dentist is invaluable in making kids comfortable and helping them to maintain excellent oral health. Pediatric dentists and their staff have a plethora of experience working with children and are very patient and caring individuals. As a child, many things can be overwhelming or scary, but going to the dentist shouldn’t be one of them.