Helping Hampden Kids Smile with Gentle and Effective Pediatric Dentistry Services
Our goal is to help parents achieve and maintain excellent oral health for their children.
Your Child’s First Dental Visit
The first “regular” dental visit should be scheduled just after the eruption of your child’s first tooth or near your child’s first birthday. The first dental visit is usually short and involves very little treatment. We may ask you to sit in the dental chair and hold your child during the examination. You may also be asked to wait in the reception area during a portion of the visit so that we can begin to establish a relationship with your child.
We will gently examine your child’s teeth and gums. X-rays may be taken to reveal decay and check on the development of your child’s permanent teeth (under the gums). We may clean your child’s teeth and apply topical fluoride to help protect the teeth against decay. We will make sure your child is receiving adequate fluoride at home. Most important of all, we will review with you how to clean and care for your child’s teeth.
What should I tell my child about the first dental visit?
We are asked this question many times. We suggest you prepare your child the same way you would before their first haircut or trip to the shoe store. Remain very positive in your description of the visit and focus on the benefits and fun of going to the dentist, rather than any preconceived negatives. Your child’s reaction to his first visit to the dentist may surprise you.
Here are some “First Visit” tips:
- Take your child for a “preview” of the office.
- Read books with them about going to the dentist.
- Review with them that the dentist will most likely be looking, touching and counting.
- Speak positively about your own dental experiences.
During your first visit, the dentist will:
- Examine your child’s mouth, teeth and gums.
- Evaluate adverse habits, such as thumb sucking.
- Check to see if your child needs supplemental fluoride.
- Teach you about cleaning your child’s teeth and gums.
- Suggest a schedule for regular dental visits.
Primary Teeth (Baby Teeth)
The first baby teeth that come into the mouth are usually the two bottom front teeth. You will notice this when your baby is about 6-8 months old. The remainder of your baby’s teeth will appear periodically. They will usually appear in pairs along the sides of the jaw until the child is about 2 1/2 years old.
At around 2 1/2 years old, your child should have all 20 teeth. Between the ages of 6 and 7, the first permanent teeth will began to erupt. Don’t worry if some teeth are a few months early or late, as children develop differently.
Baby teeth are valuable, as they not only hold space for permanent teeth but they are important for chewing, biting, speech, appearance and self-esteem. For this reason, it is essential that a healthy diet and daily hygiene be maintained.
What about preventative care?
Tooth decay and children no longer have to go hand in hand. At 58 Dental, we are most concerned with preventative care. We use the latest in dental sealant technology to protect your child’s teeth. Dental sealants are sophisticated plastics which are bonded to the chewing surfaces of decay-prone teeth to prevent cavities. This is just one of the ways we will set the foundation for your child’s lifetime of good oral health.
Most of the time, cavities are due to a diet high in sugary foods and lack of brushing and flossing.
Tips for Cavity Prevention
- Limit frequency of meals and snacks.
- Encourage brushing, flossing and rinsing.
- Watch what your child drinks.
- Do not allow your child to go to bed with a bottle of milk, juice, or soda.
- Avoid giving your child sticky foods.
- Make treats part of meals.
- Choose nutritious snacks.