Few people may think why is it so important to take a baby to the Dentist? He hardly has 3-4 teeth. Those most important things which we usually ignore is Dental Hygiene but if seen carefully that the first thing to be taken care of. From the birth of the child, Mouth is the first thing which they immediately start exploring by sucking milk and they slowly transition to solids around 6 months. Be it formula or breastmilk its very important to clean the mouth after feeding to reduce the oral decay. Tooth decay doesn’t happen just because of sugars or solids it can be with anything. The care of children’s baby teeth are for lifelong oral health.
According to the AAPD, it is very important to keep primary (or “baby”) teeth in place until they are lost naturally. The primary teeth are important for many reasons including:
- Helping children chew properly to maintain good nutrition.
- Involvement in speech development.
- Helping save space for permanent teeth.
- Promoting a healthy smile that helps children feel good about the way they look.
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends that a child go to the dentist by age 1 or within six months after the first tooth erupts. Abhi had one tooth by his first birthday and I was little scared to take him to Dentist because of pandemic. Otherwise I wanted to take him to Dentist around his first birthday no matter he got the tooth or not. But from last one month it was bugging me why am I delaying as the number of teeth are increasing and though we are sticking to to brushing 2-3 times a day, I don’t want to call it as brushing since it just feels like we are playing around. So I told myself there is no difference going to pediatrist or Dentist in this pandemic as long as everyone is taking proper measures and following the protocol. Finally we had our first Dental Visit on Tuesday and je is around 15 months now.
Tips for positive Dental Visit
I took mine at 15 months and he is too young to understand and get nervous by seeing Dentist. Yet I followed these
- Prepare the child: We did role play game by taking turns being the dentist and the patient with Abhi. We examine each other’s teeth with a mirror and used our fingers to countm touch and explore each other’s teeth so that he would be familiar with the feel of a dentist examination. I’ve been telling him from couple of days while brushing that we are gonna have Dental visit soon.
- Timing: Plan plenty of time so that the dental visit isn’t rushed, and make sure your child is well-rested before the visit so that he or she feels relaxed and comfortable. Mine is more active and relaxed in the morning and I scheduled at 11 am which is not close to his lunch or nap time so that his daily rhythm is not disturbed.
- Self Preparation: Learn about the procedure by online resources and books. Take reviews from family and friends to select whom we want. Stay positive.
We had positive experience at Bothell Pediatric Dentistry. I heard about them from one of our friends. I scheduled appointment online. Only one parent is allowed. We were offered sanitizer and then some paper work as it was our first time visit. We had warm welcome by one of the assistants of Dr. Yea and she asked us few questions about our routine and the food which he eats etc. And then Dr. Yea made Abhi comfortable first with small conversation, then examined his teeth and apply vitamins on his teeth. Of course no one likes someone keeping hands in their mouth and there were some tears which were hardly for a minute or so. Then she gave a small demo brushing the Dino’s teeth which he enjoyed n wanted to do too. We scheduled our next appointment after 9 months as suggested by them which would be around 2 years.
What about yours? When is/was your little one’s first dental visit?