According to the AADP, children should begin seeing their pediatric dentistry professional within six months to one year after their first tooth breaks through their gums. On average, most parents don’t bring their children until they are well over two-years-old. Even at a young age, their oral health development matters.
If you’ve ever heard someone say, “They’re just baby teeth. They’re going to fall out anyway.” That’s someone who’s been spreading propaganda and misconceptions; your child’s oral development isn’t solely built on how their teeth come in. Their gum health and alignment play a great deal in their overall development.
- Early visits can allows dentists to better predict your child’s tooth alignment, and allows them to bring up a plan on how to preserve space for your child’s permanent teeth.
- Your child’s speech can be impacted by neglecting their oral healthcare early on. Your pediatric dentistry professional will be able to identify any issues.
- Ensuring that your child chews their food properly can prevent overbites in the future. It also affects their digestive system.
Your child may be nervous about visiting the dentist. Calming their nerves now with patience and due diligence can negate any future fears of their pediatric dentistry office. You’ll do your own sanity a service, as well as promote your child’s lifelong attentiveness to their own oral healthcare, and beginning a positive habit in how they’ll eventually raise their own children. Curbing their nerves can be done with a bit of know-how.
- Educate yourself on everything there is to know about a child’s first visit, including all the potential outcomes. Educate your children as well; talk openly with them, purchase books that talk about dentistry, or find dentistry-positive cartoons online for them view every now and again. Associate your lifestyle with dentistry.
- Be fun and playful. The big chair can make a child feel nervous or scared. Joke around with the dentist and your child, and keep the air light and humorous. Children can identify our stress and anxiety more than we give them credit for. Keep it calm, and they’ll stay calm.
- Keep to a certain time. If your child is still taking naps, or if they wake up at a specific time every day, plan their first visit around a key time in the day where their mood is nice and calm. Stay away from “the witching hour” and your child will be able to remain calm the whole way through.