• dr.lassen.dds

At What Age Should My Child Have Their First Visit?

Updated: Apr 24

Parents are often unsure about when to take a child to a dentist. Should you wait until all of his teeth have come in, or perhaps until there is a real problem? The experts say no.



The American Dental Association and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommend that a child's first visit should be when the first tooth erupts in the mouth, no later than age one to two.


Help Dispel Fear of Dentist, Encourage Exploring/Asking

The American Dental Association and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommend that a child's first visit should be when the first tooth erupts in the mouth, no later than age one to two.

It's really about introducing your child to the dentist's office, allowing him to explore various instruments and even take a ride in the chair. Only after your child is comfortable is it time for the dentist to take a quick peek at his mouth.


Three Important Reasons WHY


This first visit accomplishes three things. First, it familiarizes your child with the staff and the office environment in a non-threatening way, thus building trust. Second, it introduces him (and you) to the specific language that the office uses. Third, it allows the dentist to do a quick examination, looking for decay. He will also check your child's gums, jaw, and bite, keeping an eye out for bottle caries, frenum issues, or other problems that may affect teeth or speech patterns. The dentist will also probably talk to you about good oral hygiene and allow you to ask any questions you may have. You may even want to bring a list of questions to the appointment.


How Often?

We recommend that children come in every six months

From the first visit onward, we recommend that children come in every six months, unless an issue comes up that needs correction, such as a lisp, teeth grinding or mouth breathing. Expect the dentist to build on first visit and add a step at each subsequent visit. For example, at the second visit, the dentist may count your child's teeth and brush them with polishing paste, then possibly add in fluoride at the visit after that.


Create Good Habits and Build On Them!


By the time the child is about three years old, he will be having full dental appointments. X-rays will be taken at five years of age if the child can handle it and it has been a good experience in the past.


Start good habits now BEFORE the first cavity or problem begins so your child can have happy, positive experience in the dental chair.

1 view