How to Prepare My Child for Their First Dental Visit

A blonde haired toddler boy sits in the dental chair with his teddy bear before his first visit to the dentist.

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that your child get their first dental visit when they turn one or get their first tooth. This may seem early, but getting your child on a path to good oral health starts when they are very young. Many parents get anxious about taking their child to the dentist for the first time. There are some easy ways to prepare for a dental appointment.

Schedule an Appointment When Your Child Is Alert

Your appointment will go more smoothly if your child is awake and happy. Avoid making an appointment during a time when they are usually taking a nap or feeling hungry. If they feel cranky or tired, this could lead them to have a poor reaction to the dentist. We’ve found that children tend to do well with morning appointments, but this all depends on your individual child.

Talk Positively About the Dentist

If your child is older, talk to them about what to expect at the dentist. There are a lot of storybooks available at the local library about trips to the dentist. Integrating some of these into your child’s bedtime routine for the few weeks before their visit can help them understand what a visit to the dentist is all about. Another thing to think about is that children can easily pick up on their parents’ worries. If you have any dental anxieties, don’t unknowingly pass them onto your child. Our office has some amenities specifically designed for kids so you might discuss the office’s playroom or TVs in the treatment rooms. You can stop by for a quick tour before the actual visit if you think it would help your child feel more comfortable.

Prepare Yourself for the Appointment

Sometimes it’s easy to forget that YOU need to prepare for your child’s first appointment too. Be prepared to be your child’s moral support during their visit. It’s important to stay calm even if your child is making a fuss. Dr. Ghimire and our team are used to working with kids and we have the training to identify any worries and make children feel comfortable. It may also be helpful to you to prepare any paperwork beforehand. This will make your day less stressful since you only have to focus on your child during the appointment. Our new patient forms are all available online.

Dentistry for Kids at Paris Mountain Dental

We believe that children must develop oral hygiene skills early on in life, ensuring that they will achieve lifelong success with their oral health. If it’s time for your child to visit the dentist, don’t hesitate to give us a call. We look forward to meeting you and your child and getting them on the road to good oral health.

We look forward to your child’s first dental visit!