Times of Oman
Oman wellness: Preparing for your child’s first dental visit
November 11, 2017 | 7:29 PM
by Dr Ajay Narayan
Even if your child is a little bit older, it’s never too late to arrange their first dental visit.
 
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Most parents do not realise the importance of beginning early dental care. An early start can ensure your child has an opportunity to build a relationship with his/her paediatric dentist or also popularly known as paedodontist.

It can make your little ones’ biannual dental assessments and cleanings an overall positive experience. Even though milk teeth aren’t permanent it is still important to keep the teeth and your child’s gums in top-notch condition. Parents must also understand that decay is contagious.

Cavities are caused by sugar-digesting bacteria that can invade your child’s mouth and an untreated cavity covered in saliva contaminated with decay-causing bacteria will eventually spread from tooth to tooth. It is also important to know that these bacteria can even reach till the deep grooves of permanent teeth in a real short span of time, the decay process would have started long before the eruption of permanent teeth, thereby causing the decay to spread swiftly from milk teeth to permanent teeth.

Bringing your child to visit the dentist can be a complex task for most parents, however I am happy to share a few tips with you, to make your child’s first visit to a dentist effortless.



1. As the first tooth comes you can start by gently brushing twice a day, using a soft bristled brush and plain water. I always tell the parents that the easiest way to create healthy, lasting oral habits is to start early and to be consistent.

2. Start early – Just as the vaccinations are important, it is equally important to remember to schedule, your child’s first dental appointment to coincide with their first birthday. Even if your child is a little bit older, it’s never too late to arrange their first dental visit.

3. Another great tip is to tour the clinic a few days ahead of the scheduled appointment. This will give the child an opportunity to meet the dentists and staff in person, and come the big day, the clinic and the dental chair will feel more comfortable.

4. It is also important to come prepared, I recommend parents to bring their child’s favourite toy or book. Apart from calming your child’s nerves it is also equally important that the parent also is completely relaxed and composed. Being supportive can help your child tremendously, every word encouragement will go a long way and even if your child kicks or screams the whole time, it’s nothing that an experienced paedodontist has not seen before.

5. Lastly, it is absolutely legal to finish the trip to the dentist with an ice-cream or your child’s favourite treat. This would eventually make the trip a rather a memorable one by ending it on a sweet note.

Dr Ajay Narayan is Specialist Paedodontist at Wassan Specialty Dental Centre. Visit wassandental.com

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