Your child’s first regular visit should be just after their third birthday. The first dental exam is usually short and involves very little treatment. We may ask you to sit in the dental chair and hold your child during the examination.
We will gently examine your child‘s teeth and gums. X-rays may be taken to reveal decay and check on the development of your child’s permanent teeth. We may clean your child’s teeth and apply fluoride to help protect the teeth against decay. Most importantly, we will review with you how to clean and care for your child’s teeth.
How to prepare your child for the First Visit
- Take your child for a preview of the office
- Read books with them about going to a dentist
- Review with them what the dentist will be doing at the time of the first visit
- Speak positively about your own dental experiences!
A first orthodontic screening is recommended at around 7 years of age to detect potential problems.
Early detection of common orthodontic problems such as crowding, premature loss of baby teeth, cross bites or many other unfavourable development issues can lead to the implementation of the most appropriate treatment that can result a shorter course of therapy and increases the chances for achieving a great smile.
Children’s Airway Assessment
It is quite common for parents to be unaware of whether their children chronically breathe through their mouth during sleep, or even day time.
Our dental professionals assess for mouth breathing symptoms and screen for enlarged tonsils. By treating mouth breathing early, many adverse problems can be reduced or avoided:
- Open mouth posture
- Dry mouth with inflamed gums and increased risk of decay
- Increasingly long and narrow face
- Crowded teeth and smaller jaw
- Enlarged tonsils
- Dark circles under the eyes
- Forward head posture
Due to impact that mouth breathing has on facial and dental development it is important that your child be seen for an orthodontic evaluation.
Sealants can protect your children’s back teeth, so that they may never need to have a filling! They are a protective plastic coating, which are applied to the chewing surfaces of teeth at risk of decay.
The chewing surfaces of back teeth have small grooves or fissures which often extend right down into the tooth itself. However well the teeth are brushed, these fissures are very difficult to clean thoroughly. Bacteria and food particles stick to them and eventually cause decay. Fissure sealants completely seal off these grooves, preventing any food particles or bacteria from getting in. They do not affect the normal chewing function of teeth.
It’s best to get advice from your dentist or dental therapist if your child would benefit from fissure sealing the permanent back molar teeth.