5 Tips to Make Your Child's Dental Visits Go Smoothly

Feb 12, 2024
5 Tips to Make Your Child's Dental Visits Go Smoothly
Whether it’s their first visit or not, you want your child to have a positive experience at the dentist, which can set the stage for great dental health in the years to come. Here are some tips that go a long way.

Your child is growing at a dizzying rate and there seem to be new changes every day. And now you’re noticing that a tooth is coming in, which means it’s time to come see us to start their journey toward great dental health.

The American Dental Association recommends that kids start visiting the dentist at 12 months, or when their first tooth erupts. We’re happy to be on the receiving end of that first visit and subsequent visits. 

Here at Silverlake Smiles, Dr. Juliet Ebrahimian and our team excel in children’s dentistry and, more importantly, we really enjoy our young patients.

While we do everything in our power to put your child at ease while they’re with us, there are a few things that you can do on your end.

The importance of early dental care

Before we dive into the tips, we want to take a moment to underscore the importance of early dental care. If you think that baby teeth are going to fall out anyway, so why bother taking care of them — think again.

Baby teeth are very important in terms of teaching your child to chew and talk, and they also act as placeholders for their permanent teeth, so you want their baby teeth to go the distance. Unfortunately, more than 21% of kids between the ages of 2 and 5 have dental caries in their baby teeth. Left unchecked, the decay can destroy the tooth.

Our goal is to help your child stay a step ahead of tooth decay and other dental issues with fluoride treatments, sealants, and close monitoring. 

Making dental visits easier

Now, let’s get into some ways that you can make the first visit, and all visits after that, a little less stressful for everyone.

1. Prepare with some books about dentistry

OK, it might not be as fun as Cat in the Hat, but there are some great children’s books that cover going to the dentist. These picture books take the mystery out of the dentist’s office and what we do here and are well worth having in your library. For some ideas, click here for a good list of picture books about going to the dentist. 

2. Bring their favorite toy

If your child has a favorite blanket or teddy bear, by all means, bring it along. These items bring comfort and that’s our goal.

3. Be upbeat

No matter how you might feel about dental care (and we hope to convince you otherwise if you have personal anxiety), try to remain upbeat and cheery about the outing. Frame it as you would going to the park — a fun adventure.

4. Leave a good impression

We make every effort to ensure that your child’s visit is easy and enjoyable, but it can still be stressful — new faces and places, new noises. So, if your child is a little stressed after seeing us, do something soothing so there’s no lasting negative impression. Go to their favorite place or have a fun video on hand for the ride home. This will leave a better impression that makes the next visit that much easier.

5. Come armed with questions

While this may not have anything to do with your child's comfort, we encourage you to use these visits as information-gathering sessions for your at-home care. 

With a little planning, getting your child the dental care they need can be easy. If you have more questions about our pediatric dental care, please contact us at our Los Angeles office, which serves the Silver Lake neighborhood and areas of Los Feliz, Atwater Village, Frogtown, and Echo Park.