As a parent, you know how important it is for your child to see the dentist regularly for cleanings and checkups. But did you know those visits should begin before your child celebrates their first birthday?
It’s true: The American Dental Association recommends kids have their first dental visit as soon as that first tooth appears, or no later than one year of age.
Seeing the dentist early means concerns can be spotted as soon as possible before they have a chance to grow into major problems. Plus, early visits set the stage for a lifetime of good oral health — and they may even reduce anxiety about seeing the dentist.
At Dental Kidz Club, our practice is dedicated to kids and their oral health needs. With locations in Brea, Corona, Covina, Ontario, Riverside, and Perris, California, we make it easy and convenient for kids to get the routine dental care they need for optimal oral health during the important years of growth and development.
Of course, while the ADA recommends visits begin by the time your child turns one, it’s never too late to begin regular dental visits. If you haven’t brought your child in for their first visit with us yet, here’s what you (and your child) can expect from our team of skilled pediatric dentists.
Tailored for your child’s needs
Pediatric and adult dental visits have the same basic goals: to prevent tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health problems, and to screen for any potential issues in their early stages. The primary difference is that at our practice, we tailor every step of the exam to your child’s age, needs, and even their anxiety level. We want your child to enjoy coming to the dentist — or at least, not to be anxious about the care we provide.
Oral health evaluation
Your child’s visit begins with a review of any concerns you or your child might have. Next, our team gently cleans and polishes each tooth using mild abrasives and special tools to remove plaque — just like during an adult dental cleaning. Depending on your child’s age, we might use other activities, like counting each tooth as we clean and polish.
We’ll look for any potential problems, like tiny cavities or areas where brushing habits need to be improved. Plus, we’ll assess your child’s jaw and tooth development, evaluating them for crowding or alignment issues that could get worse as your child grows.
Mapping out a healthy future
In addition to the “hands-on” evaluation, we might take X-rays aimed at evaluating your child’s jaws, as well as the adult teeth that are “sleeping” under the gums. Fluoride treatments and dental sealants are also offered to help protect teeth and prevent cavities and other types of tooth damage.
Before the visit ends, you’ll have plenty of time to ask questions, so you can feel confident about your child’s oral health and development. Our team also provides individualized advice tailored to your child’s unique oral health needs, including guidance on proper brushing and flossing techniques, tooth-healthy foods, and other tips aimed at helping your child enjoy healthy teeth and gums.
Kid-friendly resources to help prepare your child
Even if your child has seen a dentist in the past, visiting a new dentist for the first time can cause a little anxiety. To prepare your child for their visit — and to help set the stage for good oral health habits — check out our Kids Zone page for lots of fun activities. We also allow parents to stay with their children during their exams if they wish to.
As a parent, you play a critically important role in helping your child enjoy a healthier life — now, and as an adult. If your child is due for a dental visit, call the office or book an appointment online today.