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The Importance of Your Child’s First Dentist Appointment

date: 07.03.2024


Dr. Elizabeth "Andie" Shin, DDS - BCC Pediatric Dentistry

Elizabeth Shin, D.D.S

Elizabeth "Andie" Shin, D.D.S. is a board-certified, award-winning pediatric dentist and the Founder and President of BCC Pediatric Dentistry. Most of all she loves helping children achieve lifelong oral health.

The First Dentist Appointment For Your Child Is Important!

The first dentist appointment is an important milestone for both you and your child. Think about it as your child’s first impression of how they should feel about good oral health and hygiene. First impressions are memories that last! You and your pediatric dentist will be shaping the way your child feels about good health choices. Learn what you can do to make your child’s first dentist visit, and each one after, positive friendly fun experiences that lead them toward lifelong oral health.

Choose Good Oral Health

Dental care is an important part of a child’s oral health. Good oral health is crucial for a child’s overall health. Poor oral health can lead to a variety of health problems, including tooth decay, toothaches, gum disease, and even heart disease. That’s why it’s important to start your child off on the right foot by taking them for regular pediatric dental check-ups and brushing and flossing their teeth twice a day. Of course, this begins with their first pediatric dentist appointment.

Importance of Your Child’s First Dentist Appointment

The first dentist appointment for your child is an exciting opportunity for you, your child, and their pediatric dentist. Here you have the chance to shape how your child feels about going to the dentist, good oral health and hygiene, and overall health. This really is fun! In fact, fun is the secret ingredient. However, there are some pitfalls that you should know about. As adults, we often view our trips to the dentist as necessary inconveniences or worse depending on our individual oral health. In fact, some adults like few things less than a trip to the dentist. A negative outlook on dental visits and oral health often leads to infrequent checkups and inadequate hygiene. Ironically, this vicious cycle eventually leads to more dental visits for restorative dentistry and emergency dentistry procedures later in life. A child’s first trip to the dentist is an opportunity for you to help them develop a positive outlook on oral health and hygiene. Your child’s first visit represents that proverbial fork in the road where you (with help from your pediatric dentist) get to guide your child toward the positive, friendly, fun path leading a lifetime of good oral health.

Your commitment to your child’s lifelong oral health requires discipline, love and the very intentional choice to do your best to make your child’s oral health and hygiene a priority and their experiences positive and fun. That may sound easy but in fact, this can require significant discipline. Today more than ever parents are busy. Before or after a long day’s work, it won’t always be easy to muster up a positive attitude and go have fun brushing and flossing with your child – but you can do it! Just take a depth breath and remember that when you do this your child will benefit for a lifetime. Think about this as you prepare for your child’s first dental visit, and as your journey begins,  read our, Helpful Tips for A Happy Visit.

What To Expect During Your Child’s First Dental Appointment

During your child’s first dental visit, the pediatric dentist will examine your child’s teeth and gums, and teach you how to properly care for their teeth at home.

The dentist may also take x-rays of your child’s teeth to check for any problems. If they find any, they will provide treatment and advice on how to prevent them from getting worse. For example, depending on your child’s stage of development and other factors, they may recommend a fluoride supplement or a dental sealant which can help protect your child’s teeth from cavities and tooth decay.

Your child may be a little bit nervous or scared during their first dentist visit. However, the dentist will do their best to make them feel comfortable and relaxed to include sedation dentistry options depending on their age and stage of development. They may also give you some tips on how to help your child relax and make the visit more enjoyable.

When Should You Schedule Your Child’s First Appointment?

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, the first dental visit should take place as soon as your child’s first tooth erupts, or around their first birthday, whichever happens first. The first tooth usually erupts around 6 months of age.

At BCC Pediatric Dentistry in Bethesda, MD, we recommend that you schedule a teledentistry appointment two to three months in advance of the first appointment so we can help you prepare for your fun trip to our office.

Now you know your child’s first dentist visit is more than just an appointment.  Bethesda Chevy Chase Pediatric Dentistry is here to help! If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask your favorite dentist at BCC Pediatric Dentistry. Thanks for reading!

Need A First Dentist Appointment For Your Child?

Do you have a child ready for their first dental visit?  Looking for a new pediatric dentist in Bethesda MD for your Children? Request an appointment with BCC Pediatric Dentistry.

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