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Everything You Need To Know About Your Child's First Dentist Appointment

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For many parents, a child's first dental checkup can be an incredibly nerve-racking ordeal. However, it is a necessary part of ensuring good oral health as they age and that they are instilled with healthy daily dental habits. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about your child's first dentist appointment.

For some parents, the thought of their child's first dental appointment can creep up quicker than you might expect. As you and your family go through all of the joys and challenges that come with a newborn baby, the dentist may seem like a spec in the distance until they sprout their first tooth. If this is your case, don't worry, it is completely normal. Pediatric dentists recommend that you schedule your first dental appointment for your child at either one year, or soon after they have sprouted their first baby tooth. Getting on top of your child's dental health early on is important so that they avoid developing health issues such as:

  • Cavities
  • Gingivitis
  • Gum disease
  • Inflammed gums

Keep reading to learn about how you can prepare and what you can expect from your baby's first dentist exam.

Our NE Calgary Family Dentists Can Provide Complete Oral Healthcare For Your Entire Family

Are you looking for a comprehensive family dentist in NE Calgary? At Marlborough Dental Clinic, our experienced dentists provide comprehensive oral health care services for children, adults, and seniors. Whether you need simple dental exams and teeth cleanings or require more extensive emergency dental care or restorative dentistry, we have the skills and expertise to meet all of your dental needs at an affordable cost to you.

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Your Child's First Dentist Appointment

Whether your child is a newborn with no teeth or is getting older and starting to sprout a couple, it is never too soon to start thinking about their oral health.

When Should The First Visit Be?

Most pediatric dentists recommend that a child's first dental appointment should be when they are between six months to a year, or whenever they sprout their first baby tooth (whichever comes first). To some, this might seem redundant, albeit with the complete lack of teeth and all. However, teeth aren't the only parts of the mouth that a pediatric dentist will look at. Gum health, proper internal teeth alignment, jaw health, and much more are what your dentist will look for. If there is a problem with your child's teeth, it is best to catch it early while it remains small, rather than wait for a couple of teeth to come in and exasperate the issue.

How Should I Prepare?

When you are getting ready for the first dental exam, there are three people that you should prepare, your child, yourself, and your dentist.

Your Child: There are many ways and methods that you can prepare your child for their first dentist appointment. Some common advice for parents to prep their child is to go in the morning while your child is alert, play a game of pretend dentist at home beforehand, and be upfront about what a dentist is and does.


You: Not only is this your child's first dental exam, but it is your first for them as well! Be sure to record a list of any questions or concerns you may have for your child since they will not be able to ask those questions themselves quite yet. Be prepared to discuss your oral health routine at home for your child, as your dentist will ask about it so that they can be confident that the best possible care is being given to them. And finally, the most important thing to prepare yourself for is to be confident. Children, especially young ones, imitate their parents in more ways than you will likely notice. If you are calm and courageous, it is probable that your child will follow suit.

Your Dentist: Lastly, you need to prepare the dentist. Before your appointment, be sure to inform the staff of your NE Calgary Dental Clinic of any tendencies so that any necessary preparations can be made. Additionally, be sure to tell your dentist of your child's complete, albeit short, medical history.

What Will Happen?

For many parents, the expectation of the very first dental checkup does not match the reality. You may be frightened that there is so much to do at the first appointment, however, this is not truly the case. You can expect the first appointment to be quite short and informal, that is more so intended to introduce your youngling to the idea of the dentist.

You can expect the dentist to do very minimal treatment, and more so just examining the current oral health of your child while seated on your lap. Depending on the age of the kid at their first visit, there may be some minor cleaning if required. However, most of the time will be spent on educating the parent about proper youth oral hygiene and dental development.

Some additional topics that your dentist will likely discuss with you include:

  • Oral habits (sucking one's thumb, chewing nails, lip suckling)
  • Milestones in tooth development
  • Teething issues
  • Proper nutrition
  • Dental checkup scheduling

How Can I Protect My Child's Teeth At Home?

Good oral habits are the number one way your child can prevent developing ailments such as gingivitis, gum disease, and cavities. Once you leave the clinic, you may start to think about what habits you should instill in your child. Here are some tips to protect your children's teeth:

  • Before teeth come in, clean their gums with a warm, damp cloth
  • Upon the appearance of the first tooth, use a small, children's toothbrush and a little, pea-sized dab of toothpaste to clean the tooth
  • Ensure that the last thing that they eat or drink before bed comes before brushing their teeth
  • Assist your child with their teeth brushing until they are approximately seven or eight

Instilling proper oral habits at a young age will do wonders for your child later in life.


Call Us Today To Learn More About Our Pediatric Dental Care

At Marlborough Dental Centre, our team of dentists and dental hygienists have the knowledge and training to take extra special dental care of your child. To find out more about our children's dental services, contact us at 403-248-2066 or by filling in our online contact form.

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