It is recommended that your child see a dentist around the time their first tooth appears or no later than their first birthday. If you are a first time parent, your child's first dental visit can be nerve-wracking. You don't know how well you have been caring for their gums and teeth, aren't sure how your child will react and aren't really sure what to expect. Preparing yourself for the appointment can ease some of the nervousness you may feel beforehand, which in turn, can help your baby to feel a bit more relaxed. Here are a few ways to prepare yourself for your child's first dental visit.
Visit the Dental Office Before Making an Appointment
One of the ways you can prepare yourself for your child's first dental appointment is to visit the office you are planning on using before you even make an appointment. Getting a feel for what the office looks like, how it is run and how child-friendly the staff is can help to ease some of the worries you may have. When you are selecting a dentist for your child, consider using a pediatric dentist. These dentists specialize in treating children, meaning the staff has experience in dealing with children that cry, don't sit still or a number of other issues. And their offices are often designed to interest children and make them feel welcome. It may take time out of your busy schedule to visit different offices, but it will help you select the one that you feel most comfortable with.
Select an Appointment Time That Works Based on Your Child's Schedule
Another way to prepare for your child's first dental visit is to select an appointment time that works based on your child's schedule. Many parents are worried about how their child will act at a dental office. While you can't control their reaction, you can make things a little easier. If your child typically has nap time from 1 to 3 pm, scheduling an appointment during this time frame may mean that you and the office staff have to contend with a tired, cranky baby. Instead, schedule the appointment at a time when your child is awake, alert and happy.
Write Down Any Questions You May Have
When you think about taking your child to the dentist for the first time, you may have many questions you want to ask the dentist. You may want to ask how to properly brush a baby's teeth, what type of toothpaste to use, when you should begin flossing or whether you should even be concerned with baby teeth. However, by the time you make it into the office, fill out new patient forms and prepare your child for the dentist, these questions may slip your mind. Take the time to write down any questions you have for the dentist as they come to you and then be sure to bring your list with you on appointment day. This will help ensure you get answers to all of the dental questions you have.
Go With the Flow
The last way to prepare yourself for your child's first dental visit is to try to just go with the flow when you get to the dental office. No matter how hard you try, there is very little you can do to control the behavior of a six to 12 month old, You can't explain to the child what is going to happen or help prepare them. And you have no way to know if your child is going to cry, wiggle or sit happily in the dental chair. Dentists who work with children daily have seen it all. So try to try to take a couple of deep breaths and hope for the best so your child doesn't pick up on your stress and become scared or nervous themselves.
Many first time parents don't know what to expect when they are taking their child to the dentist for the first time. However, you can help to ease some of the nervous energy you have by getting a feel for the office before the day of your appointment, scheduling an appointment at a time when your child won't be tired and grouchy, writing down any questions you may have so you don't forget and going with the flow.
For more information, contact an office like Apollo Dental Center.