When You Should Take Your Child To The Dentist For The First Time And What To Expect

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends taking children to the dentist once they reach the age of one. This may seem like a really young age for dental visits, but it is something that will help your child have healthy teeth and help your child get accustomed to visiting the dentist. Here are a few things to know about your child's first visit to the dentist.

Why this is so important

Most children begin getting their teeth before the age of one. As these baby teeth come in, it is important to keep them healthy because they can affect the permanent teeth that will replace them in the future. Taking your child to the dentist when he or she is only one year old is also a great way for you to learn more about helping your child create healthy dental habits. For example, your dentist might tell you to avoid giving juice to your child because juice is full of sugar. This is just one of many tips you can learn that could help your child's teeth stay stronger and cavity free.

Don't expect a full check-up

If you decide to follow this recommendation and take your child to the dentist by their first birthday, you should realize that this visit will not be the same as the visits you have with your dentist. While the dentist may try to take a look at the child's teeth, you should realize that kids this age do not always cooperate. Because of this, the dentist might recommend placing the child on your lap as he or she tries to take a peek. This too, though, may not even work.

In other words, you should not expect the dentist to actually do any work inside your child's mouth. In fact, your child's dentist might not even take x-rays of the child's teeth until he or she is four to six year's old.

How this prepares your child for future dental work

The first few visits to the dentist will introduce your child to the world of dentistry. As your child ages, the dentist may be able to accomplish more during each visit. Most pediatric dentists are great at helping kids feel comfortable while they are there. They often do this by explaining what each tool is and by offering prizes to kids when their visits are complete.

If you have a small infant who is about to turn one, you may want to begin looking for a pediatric dentist to visit. To learn more, contact a dentist like Alaska Dentistry For Kids in your area that specializes in dentistry for kids.