When to Start Taking Your Child to the DentistMar 21 2020

Parenting small children is a big adventure in ‘firsts’ and the dentist is no different. There isn’t a specific set age that is mandated for the first dentist visit but the consensus is that children should have their first visit around their first birthday or six months after the eruption of the first tooth. Baby teeth are sensitive and the dentist can educate parents about necessary care in addition to physical cleaning. It’s much more an educational procedure than a dental one. Plus, the sooner that

Baby teeth have especially cavity prone molars so it’s important to prevent cavities on baby teeth. Regular six month visits should start around two years old when the child transitions from bottle to cup.

Some dentists, however, prefer to have short visits every three months to build up trust with especially fussy children. You should expect that the dentist will take the first set of X-rays between the ages of 4 and 6 but you can ask your dentist about your child’s specific case to get a better idea of the timeline. Children who visit the dentist and get in the dentist’s chair more often are typically less extreme in their fear or anxiety in the future. It’s important to talk with your children before the visit and to give them guidelines about what to expect and how to act. Building excitement as a positive event is very important.

One option that is available to you when you start your child going to the dentist at a young age is having their molars protected with sealants. These special coatings can last up to three years and keep bacteria from collecting in the crevices of the very irregular surfaces of the back teeth, as long as there are no existing cavities.

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