Babies should see a pediatric dentist within six months of the arrival of their first tooth. This is an important appointment, but it will be a quick and gentle visit. A pediatric dentist has had two years of extra training specializing in the needs of children’s dentistry which may include special needs.
Most importantly, it gives the child a chance to meet their dentist in a non-threatening manner and can be vital to curbing dentophobia (fear of dentists) which can begin at an early age.
The dentist will check your child’s teeth, bite, gums and jaw to ensure everything is growing correctly. If a tooth seems in need of cleaning, a skilled hygenist will do so gently and advise the parents on oral healthcare which will reduce plaque and tartar. The dentist will also discuss any developmental issues they may see after the first exam.
This is also a good time to talk to the dentist about oral habits such as thumb sucking and tongue thrusting as well as any problems you may be experiencing while your child is teething. An x-ray will not be taken until the child is 3- or 4-years-old, so any information you can give to the dentist will be very helpful.
The first visit to the dentist can be an important basis for a lifetime of good dental health. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the appointment or any special needs, don’t hesitate to give us a call.