What to Expect at Your Baby's First Dental Check Up

Posted on: 16 December 2015

Your baby's first dental check up is one of the most important health events in his or her life. As research has suggested, oral health is directly linked to overall human health. That being said, your kid's first dental visit shouldn't be postponed and should be before he or she turns 1 or not later than 6 months after he or she develops the first tooth.

What will occur at the first dental check up?

You as a parent will be directly participating in your baby's first dental check up. It's important for your kid to feel like they are in a safe and comforting environment so they will be more than willing to come again in his next visits to the dentist. You may be asked to sit and hold your baby while the dentist performs the examination. Other dentists may prefer to see the child by themselves to habituate your kid to remain alone during following check ups. In any case, the visit will be short. The dentist will check your child's teeth, his bite, jaw, gum, and oral tissues. If he deems it necessary he may do a general clean up.

What tips will the dentist give you?

Preventative measures are very important as they will ensure your kid's teeth stay in proper shape for as long as possible. A competent dentist will tell you many optimal oral hygiene practices, assess if there is any need for fluoride, help your baby fix any harmful habits such as nail-biting and thumb sucking, recommend which foods to give him and which ones to avoid, and schedule the next dental check up – which should be six months or so after the first one. Flouride is an important component that will prevent tooth decay in the long run.

Will your child need an X-ray?

Most likely than not, your child will not need an X-ray in his first dental check up. However, most kids won't need one until their six birthday or a bit earlier. An X-ray will allow your dentist to detect if there is a bite problem, check if all teeth are developing as expected, and determine if any adult tooth is about to grow. Some kids are more prone to dental issues than others. If your child has any issue such as a cleft lift or cleft palate, he may need an X-ray around the time of his first dental check up.