Parents are often found wondering about the right age to take their child for the very first dental check up. Well, the short and sweet answer would be to plan for the first visit when your child celebrates his or her “first birthday”, according to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. They suggest that the best time for a child for their first visit for a dental check up is when they turn one.
This answer has taken most of the parents by surprise. Many studies and research conducted by various organizations have concluded that children in preschool are getting more cavities. According to the report, more than 1 in 4 children in the US develop cavities by the age 4. It has also been reported that some even develop cavities by the age 2. This report indicates that parents must take the necessary steps about the dental well being of their children.
How to Choose a Dentist for Your Children:
If you are preparing for your child’s first dental check up, it is important to choose the right dentist. Some of the tips which can help you making the right choice are:
Consult your friends and family. It may be possible to get a few references. Many patients have been matched to some of the best practitioners through word of mouth.
After getting the name and contact number of dentists, call them and ask about the right age they recommend for a child’s first dental check up. Consider those who suggest your child’s first birthday as the ideal time.
Try to find a pediatric dentist who specializes in the child care.
You can refer the website of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry – www.aapd.org and click the link “Find a Pediatric Dentist”.
You can also ask your family doctor or someone close to you in medical/dental circles for a reference.
Preparing Your Child For the Dental Check Up:
It is very important for your child to overcome the fear of the dentist. Get your child familiar with the dentist. You can take help from those who have gone through this situation. They can give you some useful tips. Another way is to teach your child how dentists and check ups can make their teeth stronger by means of a role play, books and stories. Nowadays, a few mobile apps have proven to offer some help too.
What to Expect at the First Visit:
If your child is comfortable, then the first session can last up to 30 minutes. During this session you can expect:
A detailed and thorough examination of your child’s jaw, teeth and gums.
Cleaning and polishing your teeth and removal of stains.
Dentist’s questioning about your child’s health and eating habits.
Dental x-ray of your child.
Assessment of the fluoride need for your child.
It is crucial to consider the above mentioned points before your child’s first dental check up. After all, it’s the matter of your child’s well being.