Young girl sitting in her mother's lap during her first visit to the dentist.

How to Prepare Your Child for their 1st Trip to the Dentist

Tips for Your Child’s 1st Dental Appointment

We love working with kids and our dental team knows how to put children at ease during their dental visits. We also work hard to teach your children good dental habits that will last for life. Follow these tips to help make your child’s first visit to see us a positive experience!

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Always speak positively about going to the dentist. Don’t transfer your fears or anxieties about dental care to your children.

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Tell your child that we will be counting their teeth and then polishing them so they are shiny and clean.

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It is a good thing if a younger child can watch an older sibling or parent at the dentist for a recall exam, if they exhibit cooperative and positive behaviours.

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Tell your child that the dentist is going to check their teeth just like a physician checks out the rest of their body.

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Encourage them that “big kids” go to the dentist. Most children are eager to impress you with the next step in their maturity or independence.

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Unless there is an emergency, we do not do any treatment other than a cleaning at the initial examination so reassure your child that this appointment is just to “look around”.

If your child does require follow-up treatment there are a few things you can do to help it go smoothly:

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Please DO NOT talk about needles, drills or pain. Young children are very impressionable and anything you say, even as a joke can create anxiety that is very difficult to undo.

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We use the tell-show-do method to explain to children what we are doing as we do it. This satisfies their natural curiosity and allows them to feel a sense of responsibility and pride in the success of the procedure.

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We have many methods to introduce the “scary” aspects of dentistry. Children are incredibly tolerant of dental procedures if they are not nervous at the outset.

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We rarely use terms like needle, drill etc. We have kid-friendly terminology to explain the procedures.

We allow parents to stay in the operatory while we work if they are helpful and supportive. If you know you will not be comfortable watching due to your own nervousness, or that your child likes to feel independent, please feel free to wait in the waiting area. We do ask that if you are going to watch that you allow us to work without interference or distraction to the child. Of course we welcome your questions and strive to make you comfortable with the planned procedures.

Children 12 & Under Can Win a Great Toy Every Month!

Every time we see your child for a cleaning they are eligible to fill out a ballot in the Kids Toy Draw. Visit Laurentian Dental Today for Your Family’s Optimal Dental Health.

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