What’s My Role in Infant Dentistry?
PARENTS OFTEN WONDER whether or not they should be in the room with their children during infant dentistry treatments. The quick answer is – it depends. The main goal for Young Dentistry for Children is to work as a team with parents and have open communication. Besides, we all have the children’s best interests in mind regarding their oral health care.
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends scheduling the first dental checkup with a pediatric dentist as young as six months old or as soon as the first tooth erupts. We love having parents next to their children during their first dental exam and subsequent regular dental visits, especially younger children. You may even prefer having your infant on your lap for the appointment.
A child’s first dental visit in infant dentistry typically lasts between 30-45 minutes. The primary goal of this visit is to help them feel comfortable at the dentist. During the exam, we check the development of baby teeth, gums, jaw, and oral tissues. We like to talk with parents about home dental care, diet, habits, fluoride treatments, and point out any tooth decay or concerns we come across.
When parents remain in the room for treatment, we ask that they play a passive role in behavior management and focus on being present for their child. Our little dental patients must grow to trust their dentist, and we appreciate parents allowing us to achieve that.
Little by little, your growing child copes better with brief separations in their dental experience. By the age of 4, most children are more independent and can sit in another room, away from their parents for exams and treatments.
Kids take great pride in feeling brave and accomplished when they experience the whole visit on their own. If there are any issues, we always ask the parent to come back at the end of the appointment to go over problem areas or point out cavities.
My Infant Has A Cavity; Now What?
When it comes to treating dental problems, studies say parental presence in the treatment room affects children’s behavior. All in all, you know your child best. Our first step is always to ask parents how they think their child will cope.
Some parents know that their child is a different person when they’re not around and tend to listen better on their own. Others are aware that their child fears being without them and may need extra parental support.
For the first treatment appointment, it is always good to try and see how the child does without the parent in the room. Some parents have anxiety about specific procedures, and kids can pick up on these emotions. Calmness should be front and center for your child’s treatment appointment.
All of our dentists are specially trained in infant dentistry and how to manage children during these difficult situations. We have various entertainment options and move quickly to complete the procedure as painlessly and efficiently as possible.
If you have any questions or concerns about infant dentistry and preparing for your child’s first appointment, or anything in regards to caring for your child’s teeth, please don’t hesitate to contact Young Dentistry for Children in Westminster and Louisville, Colorado and surrounding areas.