Our practice is committed to providing your child with safe, gentle, high-quality dental care. We understand that your child may feel anxious about visiting the dentist. We are sensitive to your children’s needs, and it is our goal to not only make patients feel comfortable while visiting our practice, but to also provide the best care possible.
During the first dental visit, children under the age of three are usually more comfortable in their parents lap than in the dental chair. This technique is referred as the “knee-to-knee” or “lap-to lap” exam position. During the exam you and the doctor sit facing one another with your knees touching his/her 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 in the doctor’s lap. This way your child can look into your eyes, and feel secure that you are holding him. It is normal for young children to occasionally cry at their first dental examination. It does not mean they are in pain, and it does not 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 he will grow accustomed to the routine and will be hopping into the dental chair for a ride sooner than you know.
Children older than 3 ½ are often ready to lie back in the dental chair for a traditional examination and dental cleaning. Dr. Ramirez will explain everything to your child in “kid friendly” terms.
During your child’s first visit, we will:
- Review medical and dental history forms
- Examine and clean your child’s teeth, checking for any cavities or early signs of tooth decay or gingivitis
- Take X-rays of teeth based on Dr. Ramirez’s recommendation
After the checkup and teeth cleaning are complete, Dr. Ramirez will meet with you to discuss X-rays, help create an individual treatment plan, and answer any questions that you may have.
How can I prepare my child for his first dental appointment?
The best preparation for your child’s first visit to our office is maintaining a positive attitude. Children pick up on adults’ apprehensions, and if you make negative comments about trips to the dentist you can be sure that your child will fear an unpleasant experience and act accordingly. Show your child the pictures of the office and staff on the website. Let your child know that it’s important to keep his teeth and gums healthy, and that the doctor will help him do that. Remember that your dentist is specially trained to handle fears and anxiety, and our staff excels at putting children at ease during treatment.
Bring your smile, but also remember to bring these with you to your first appointment:
- Your child’s completed patient information form
- Your child’s insurance card
Regular checkups are an important part of maintaining a healthy smile!
The American Dental Association recommends visiting the dentist every six months for regular checkups and routine teeth cleanings to keep teeth and gums healthy.
We understand that you have a busy schedule, so when you’re preparing to visit the dentist, please remember that your child’s appointments can last between 30-45 minutes.