INFANT ORAL HEALTH CARE (BIRTH TO TWO YEARS)
On your first visit for your infant, you will receive information about the cavity process, as well as information about proper care of the teeth in order to prevent cavities. The use of a "rice grain" amount of fluoride toothpaste is recommended since they have not developed adequate spitting skills. At this age, your child is not yet ready for a dental cleaning while reclined in the dental chair. Instead, your doctor may do a “knee to knee exam” to look at your child’s teeth until the age of three.
For the “knee to knee exam” you and the doctor sit facing one another with your knees touching their knees. The two adults are creating a bed out of their laps. You then recline your child backward with your child’s bottom in your lap and his head on the doctor's lap. During the first visit, a cleaning and fluoride treatment will be completed as well as discussing proper brushing and flossing techniques, bottle/sippy cup use, oral habits, and nutrition.
It is normal for young children to cry at their first dental examination. It does not mean they are in any pain and it certainly doesn’t mean they will always cry when they visit the dentist. Crying is simply an age-appropriate response to a new situation with new faces. As you continue to bring your child in regularly every six months they will grow accustomed to the routine and will be hopping into the dental chair for a ride sooner than you know.
PREPARING YOUR CHILD (THREE YEARS AND ABOVE)
We encourage you to prepare your child for a visit to the pediatric dentist before the first appointment. For young children, excellent books that describe a visit to the dentist can be found at the library and in bookstores. Discuss the positive aspects of dentistry with your child. Convey good feelings about the dental visit as being a part of growing up. Let your child know they are going to learn lots of new ways to make their teeth sparkle and enjoy a healthy smile.
Studies and our experience have shown that we can establish a direct and personal relationship with your child when you remain in the adult reception area. We are fully aware of the anxieties associated with dentistry and strive to alleviate them through empathy, patience, and our own unique way of providing outstanding pediatric care in a child-friendly environment. It is our goal to make each visit to The Loose Tooth Pediatric Dentistry a positive and fun experience for your child.
During this visit, your child will have a comprehensive oral exam, cleaning, fluoride, and digital dental x-rays.
It is best if you refrain from using words around your child that might cause unnecessary fear, such as “needle”, “shot”, “pull”, “drill”, or “hurt”. Our office makes a practice of using words that convey the same message but are pleasant and non-frightening to the child. We use a “tell-show-do” technique to allow your child to see, touch, and understand every object they will encounter during the visit.
Morning appointments are recommended for the little ones when they are fresh and more accepting of new experiences. If you expect your child to react well, chances are very good your child will enjoy the first visit to our office. In addition to preparing your child for the important first visit, please provide all information pertinent to your child’s dental, medical, and social situation on the health forms our office will give you. This will enable us to provide the best possible care for your child.
DO’s & DON’Ts
- DO use positive wording
- DON'T mention or remind negative dental history to your child
- DO schedule early in the day
- DON'T allow your anxiety to influence your child’s dental visit
- DO practice terminology or recommended words before their first dental visit
- Sleepy Drops
- Whistle or Blower
- Clean or Blow on the tooth
- Wiggle a tooth
- Sugar Bug
- Count Teeth
- Tooth Counter
WORDS TO AVOID
- Needle or Shot
- Drill on Tooth
- Pull or Yank a Tooth