At Mona Vale Dental we often get asked the question of when a child should come for their first dentist appointment.
What age should a child go to the dentist?
Children should start seeing the dentist from the age of two onwards. It is important that they are assessed for their early ‘dental milestones’ and to help parents make sure they are on the right track in terms of home oral care, diet and dental development.
The baby teeth are incredibly important as their health sets the tone for your child’s future, adult smile. Which is why we encourage early and regular care.
At your child’s first appointment your dentist will take a full medical history and look at factors such as your child’s overall health and development.
Your dentist will discuss some of the following:
- Brushing – when to start brushing, what toothbrush and toothpaste to use etc.
- Habits such as thumb sucking
- The risk of decay and how to prevent it
- Bite (how your children’s teeth come together)
Sometimes very young children won’t have an actual examination on their first visit, but they will get a chance to sit and play in the dental chair. It is a great way to familiarise them to a new environment and to introduce them to the dentist as a fun and non-scary person.
Your role as a parent
Parents play a very important role in making visits to the dentist a positive and enjoyable experience.
To help prepare your child for their dental visits you can ‘play dentist’ at home and count your child’s teeth and explain that the dentist takes care of our teeth. It is important that when you talk about the dentist that you use positive and child-friendly terms, like; “seeing the tooth fairy’s friend” or “going for a ride in the dental chair”.
Our friendly dental team has a lot of experience and well trained to be able to deal with babies and young children to put them at ease.
It is well recognised that children who are used to coming to the dentist from a young age seldom develop dental phobias and enjoy better dental health throughout life.