Most of us probably have a family doctor, sometimes more than one. However, very few of us actually have a family dentist. A study conducted on behalf of Delta Dental Plans Association confirms that most children do not meet with their dentist until they are well above two years of age. Common reasons given by caregivers to delay a visit to the dentist included ‘young age’ and ‘not enough teeth’.
While this is the reality, The Canadian Dental Association recommends the assessment of infants, by a dentist, within 6 months of the eruption of the first tooth or by one year of age.
The Importance of Primary Teeth
The primary teeth, also known as the milk teeth, form the foundation of a child’s first experience with food. Whether trying to eat a squishy banana or chewing a piece of toast, kids form their first food memories with the help of their teeth.
There are many reasons why maintaining good oral health of infants is important:
- Healthy teeth and gums promote proper chewing of food, avoiding choking and indigestion
- Teeth form an important element of experiencing different food tastes and flavours
- Teeth form the basis of speech development as it promotes specific sounds
- Milk teeth serve a special purpose by saving space for the permanent teeth
- Good teeth promote self-confidence among young children
Leading dental practices, such as King Ritson Dental Clinic, stress the importance of good dental health, especially for young children. Research has depicted that kids who were exposed to regular visits to the dentist grow up to care for their teeth better than those who haven’t. Moreover, they have also been found to have a reduced amount of phobia pertaining to dental visits.
Here is how you can make your kid’s first experience at the dentist positive and ensure that they have little or no anxiety before their first exam:
Make Believe Game
Pretend play helps to build positive affirmations for a child towards their first experience with the dentist. It helps them to know what exactly to expect from a dental visit and to be much less apprehensive when a stranger asks them to open their mouth wide. Making a child understand how dentists examine patients and what to expect during the visit helps them to be mentally prepared.
It is a great idea to take your child along for your next dental visit. This will help them to see first hand how doctors examine teeth and administer treatments.
Find Some Children’s Books
Reading about the dentist from a children’s book will help your child to understand the importance of dental health in a fun way through stories and songs.
Planning a Dental Visit
Finally, on the day of the visit, make sure that your child has rested and had a bite to eat. The last thing that you need is a hunger tantrum.
King Ritson Dental Clinic is a reputed dental practice in Oshawa known for working with families and children. KR Dental provides the best dental treatments, ensuring great dental health.