What You Need to Know About Your Child’s First Trip to the Dentist
Parents: Why is it important to take your child to the dentist? How can you prepare for your toddler’s first dental appointment? And what’s special about Must Love Kids Pediatric Dentistry? Here’s everything you need to know about taking your child to the dentist.
Why It’s Important to Take Your Child to the Dentist
While many parents make an extra effort to care for their child’s teeth, initial signs of oral developmental issues aren’t always visible to the naked eye. A professional dentist has the right tools and experience to perform a comprehensive exam of your child’s teeth and gums to make sure they are developing properly. By catching any oral health issues early (crooked teeth, bite alignment, and missing teeth), your pediatric dentist will have a better chance at getting your child’s dental health back on track. Sure, your child will eventually lose their milk teeth one day—but while they’re still here, it’s important that we take good care of them. Kids who get cavities in their baby teeth have a greater risk of developing cavities in permanent teeth as well, which, if left untreated, can lead to toothache, infection, and eventually tooth loss.
When should your child visit the dentist?
A good rule of thumb here is: first tooth, first birthday, first dental appointment. Schedule your child’s dental appointment around the time the first tooth breaks through the gumline or as soon as your child turns 1 year old, whichever happens first. It might seem too soon, but taking your child to the dentist early will make a world of difference to the way your child cares for their smile as they continue to grow. A pediatric dentist will educate both you and your child on the proper way to brush and floss, building the foundation of a proactive approach to dental care and helping your child to get used to the idea of taking care of their teeth and gums.
What’s special about the Must Love Kids pediatric dental practice?
The name of our dental practice defines the philosophy of our practice: Must Love Kids! Dr. Mo and Dr. G’s passion to help and work with children comes naturally to them. You’ll notice it in their use of needle-free numbing and laser dentistry to maximize your child’s comfort; how they explain dental treatments with words your child understands, talking your child through the procedure step-by-step before starting it; and the way our entire front office is built for comfort—a parent’s lounge with two large touchscreen tablets, free high-speed Wi-Fi, free gourmet coffee, and a variety of tea. We also have a second lounge equipped with all the latest entertainment, as well as an iPad station for kids. You will be pleasantly surprised at every corner and may even forget that you’re in a dental office! This is why Must Love Kids should be your number one choice for pediatric dentistry in Vancouver.
Why prepare your child for their first dental appointment?
Like everything else in life, preparation is key. For your child, this will be the first time meeting the dentist. This first trip will build the foundation for the type of relationship your child will have with the dentist, and a positive experience can help cultivate a lifelong habit of visiting the dentist. If your little one has shown any anxiety about medical checkups, start preparing them early for their dental checkups. Explain to your child who a dentist is and why it’s important to visit them (hint: it’s the first point on this post). Read books or watch videos of your child’s favorite character visiting the dentist to help your little one be less afraid of going to a strange, sterile place. You may also want to play dentist-related games with your toddler to get them comfortable with letting a “big person” put their hands in their mouth as they count and brush their teeth. That way it won’t come as a surprise when the dentist does the same thing and will make it less likely your little one’s stay will involve bribery or tantrums.
What should a parent and child expect at their first Must Love Kids dental appointment?
At Must Love Kids, we try to make your child’s visits to the dentist a positive and exciting adventure. The first dental appointment involves a relaxed review of your child’s overall dental health. You and your little one will get a chance to meet the staff, tour the office, sit in a dental chair, and have fun while visiting. Dr. Mo or Dr. G can do a comprehensive dental evaluation afterward only if your child is comfortable. Otherwise we’ll spend the rest of your visit discussing proper diets, nutrition, and good oral hygiene habits. The professional dental cleaning, fluoride therapy, and any necessary X-rays normally done during this first visit can wait until your next appointment when your child feels more relaxed and comfortable. Schedule your child’s dental appointment with us and let’s make your child’s first trip to the dentist a positive experience.