Infant Dental Exams
Our office, as well as the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), American Dental Association (ADA), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) all agree that a dental home should be established for every child no later than their first birthday.
These early visits are beneficial for parents, as our team’s focus will be on reviewing important growth, development, and oral-health milestones, as well as going over a healthy diet and oral hygiene habits for home care.
Establish a Dental Home Early
Kids who establish their dental home at an early age have better overall oral health outcomes. This ensures that your child’s teeth and oral development will be closely and periodically monitored.
It also helps to promote a positive impression and experience at the dentist, which can carry on into their adult life. At Sycamore Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentistry, we love seeing babies and teaching their parents about taking care of their teeth and oral health!
Let’s Start Slow
The first exam and cleaning are typically conducted “knee-to-knee” — that is, with Dr. Sarah examining and brushing your child’s mouth while your baby remains in the comfort of your lap. How does that work? Easy! Dr. Sarah and her team will explain all the steps involved.
To give you an idea, you’ll place your child facing towards you, with his or her legs wrapped around your waist, then gently lay him or her back on the dentist’s lap. If recommended, Dr. Sarah can perform a gentle exam of your baby’s mouth with a mirror, clean their teeth with a toothbrush, and apply a fluoride treatment.
X-rays, or “pictures” are usually not taken at this visit unless there has been trauma to the teeth or if there is a cavity or infection present.
Some babies will cry and fuss as this is going on, and that’s okay and completely normal! It’s important to remember that the exam is necessary to determine your baby’s oral health status and to see if all tissues and teeth are developing normally. The best thing you can do is hold your baby’s hands as this is going on and let Dr. Sarah do the rest.
Dr. Sarah may sing to your child while this is going on like a soothing technique, so if they have a favorite tune, Dr. Sarah is always up for song requests!
Just know that this process will be brief and it does not cause your child any pain. The routine always ends with a prize and a goodie bag to keep your little one happy and smiling.
Caring for Your Baby’s Teeth & Gums
Here are some of our best tips to care for your baby’s teeth and gums:
Contact Us Today
We are so excited to see you and your baby at Sycamore Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentistry! If you have any additional questions about infant oral care or would like to schedule an appointment, please don’t hesitate to contact us.