What to Expect at Your Child’s First Dental Visit
Our doctors and staff work with children of all ages. We are committed to making each dental visit a fun, happy, and helpful experience for your family.
The ideal time for your child’s first visit to our dental office is around the time of his or her first birthday. At this visit one of our top Chicago dentists will evaluate how your child’s mouth is developing, give you tips for caring for their new teeth, and help you prevent any habits that may be harmful. Our goal is to prevent harmful habits and educate you and your child on helpful routines. Good oral health is a daily habit that starts at home.
We understand that many adults may have “dental anxieties” and that these may make it difficult to bring the children to the dentist. So we’ve created some tips to help you and your child prepare for that first, and all, visits.
young children don’t understand time. So we suggest that you wait
until the day of your appointment to let them know that they are
visiting the dentist. You can describe this first visit as being where
the “Tooth Doctor” will count their teeth and help them learn how to
care for them. Make a game of it, or sing a song. We’ve found that if
the parent portrays it as a fun experience, the child is excited,
- You can show them this video of a family preparing for and attending their first visit to the dentist. It’s a short video of just over 10 minutes, but it will give them and you, a vision of what the dentist will be like.
your child know that this is an adventure. They’re going to a new
place to meet new people and see some fun things. Try to not use any
words that will frighten them, like “needle” or “drill.”
help make it a calm experience, we can examine your child while they
sit in your lap in the dental chair. We find that with infants and
toddlers this helps them feel safe and secure.
- Feel free to bring any special toys or blankets that your child may find calming. We can check your child’s doll’s teeth if you like. We’ve found that this makes the visit even more fun.
Our treatment rooms are open spaces so that parents can be present during the visit.
What happens during your child’s first dental exam?
The first part of your child’s dental visit will be taking a health history, which includes x-rays and cleaning of any teeth. Then we’ll examine your child’s mouth, palate, gums, tongue, and teeth while we educated them about healthy food choices, how to properly brush and floss, and other dental health habits.
At each visit, we let you know how your child’s dental health is progressing. We give you:
- An assessment of your child’s risk for decay;
- An evaluation of your child’s soft tissues and gums;
- An evaluation of your child’s bite and dental growth; and
- An assessment of your child’s oral health as it pertains to his or her overall health including suggestions about nutrition