CLOSE
 
your child's first visit

We appreciate the trust you have placed in us in caring for your child’s dental health. You will notice many changes in your child’s mouth during their early development years. It’s so important that they have a positive dental experience that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. Ensuring their dental visits are positive and happy experiences is a priority for us at bc dental

Our Oral Health Therapists are highly competent in children’s dentistry and have a warm, friendly and caring manner that makes visiting the dentist an enjoyable experience. 


When you book your child in for a dental check-up they will initially be seen by our Oral Health Therapist (who has a BA degree in oral health) as well as one of the dentists. Oral Health Therapists are specially trained to attend to the dental needs of children and are skilled at putting children at ease and helping them to feel comfortable at the dentist. They educate children and their parents about preventative care and motivate children to look after their teeth. Primarily working with pre-school, primary and secondary school patients, they work under the direct supervision of our dentists to provide your child with the very best care. Our Oral Health Therapist can take x-rays, clean and polish teeth, fill cavities, apply fissure sealants and take dental impressions for mouth guards. Any complex dental concerns like severe decay, toothache or dental trauma is referred to our team of dentists. 

Your child’s First Visit

It is important that your child’s first visit to the dentist is early rather than waiting for problems to occur. The ADA recommends that annual visits to the dentist start at 6 months of age. At 6 months we are able to check for any abnormalities, but more importantly we can advise you on ideal diet requirements and good habits to help avoid the need for your child to ever have fillings! 

Children who have regular preventative care visits and are comfortable with visiting the dentist tend to have fewer problems and are less likely to be afraid of dental treatments. Treat the appointment as an ordinary event rather than making a big deal of it. There are many children’s books that describe a dental visit and we recommend you read one before the visit to help prepare your child before they arrive.

 It can be helpful sometimes to place your child on your lap instead of in the chair for their dental check. It’s common for very young children not to let the dentist look at their teeth on the first visit, remaining positive and taking time is key. It’s also important not to let your fears or phobias affect them.

During your child’s first visit the dentist may:  

  • Conduct a dietary analysis
  • Check genetic abnormalities 
  • Discuss your home habits, so when your child gets their first teeth you know they are safe?
  • Assess your child’s risk of dental problems such as decay or crooked teeth
  • Clean your child’s mouth
  • Apply a fluoride treatment
  • Educate them on good oral hygiene, and show them how to brush and floss
  • Refer them to another dental specialist such as an orthodontist

Your child’s diet

Your child’s diet plays an essential role in helping to keep their teeth healthy. Eating and drinking acidic foods and drinks can contribute to dental decay. These effects can be prevented by following some healthy diet tips:

Sugar

Foods high in sugar, such as concentrated fruit snacks, sweets and lollies, muesli bars and sugary soft drinks and juices all contribute to dental decay and erosion. Refined foods such as savoury crackers and chips can also have high carbohydrate (complex sugar) content, which is why it’s important to check the information labels on packaged foods to determine which foods are suitable. These foods, if eaten often over long periods of time, are high risk for causing dental decay.

  • Eat a wide variety of nutritious foods that are high in calcium and low in acids and sugar
  • Enjoy healthy snacks such as cheese and fruit
  • Feed your children a diet which is high in fresh fruits, vegetables, wholegrain cereals, lean meats and dairy products
  • Limit sugary foods such as lollies, cordial, soft drinks and biscuits to special occasions and always rinse out with water afterwards

Acid

Many drinks that are high in sugar are also acidic which means they can have an erosive effect on your child’s teeth. Sports drinks, soft drinks, energy drinks, fruit juices and cordials often have high levels of acid. These types of drinks should be limited and your child should be encouraged to drink water as often as possible. 

  • Avoid holding or swishing high acid drinks in the mouth
  • Use a straw when drinking soft drink and fruit juices to minimize the acid exposure to teeth
  • Sugar free gum can stimulate saliva flow and wash acids away
  • After drinking acidic drinks rinse with water to help remove any acids remaining in the mouth

Most importantly, to protect against dental decay your child’s healthy diet must be complimented by good oral hygiene, which means brushing and flossing daily and regular preventative care visits to the dentist from an early age.

To help keep track of brushing day and night, download our Tooth Brushing Chart

Have some fun and learn about good snacking playing our Healthy Snacks Game

Tooth eruption

Tooth eruption is when teeth develop and enter the mouth. Although they develop during pregnancy, the baby teeth usually start to erupt at 6 months of age and the last baby tooth erupts at about 2 years of age.  Baby teeth or primary teeth start erupting at approximately 6 months until 2 years of age. At around the age of 6 years, the permanent teeth start erupting and there is a mixture of primary and permanent teeth, which is called mixed dentition. 

Adult teeth will grow and push out the baby teeth, and molar teeth will grow behind the baby teeth. There are usually 3 sets of molar teeth: 6 year old and 12 year old molars, followed by wisdom teeth. 

To keep a record your child’s dentition, please download our Tooth Eruption Chart

read more