Children’s Dentistry

It is extremely important to care for your children’s teeth from an early age.

Children’s teeth need to be looked after very gently and carefully.
Primary teeth or baby teeth help children to speak clearly and to chew; at the same time they are also preparing the way for secondary teeth. You can help give your children healthy teeth and gums just by following a simple dental routine.
It is very important that you take your children to visit a dentist before they experience a tooth ache. Routine check-ups from an early age can help to remove fear of the dental setting and will establish a good dental routine that they can follow their whole lives.
Usually the first visit is brief. This is an ideal opportunity for your child to get to know the dentist and the clinic in a friendly and non-threatening manner, which is our aim.

 

During this visit our dental team will:

  • undertake a cavity risk assessment
  • examine your child’s teeth for decay
  • examine your child’s soft tissue and gums for disease or other problems
  • evaluate your child’s ‘bite’: the way their teeth fit together
  • identify deleterious habits or potential problems
  • show you and your child how to properly clean their teeth at home.
  • answer any concerns or questions.

 

Because we want this first visit to be as easy and fun as possible for your child, we don’t usually do a cleaning. However, if your child is three or four years old, or very mature, we may recommend a cleaning and fluoride application at this first visit. This prophylaxis is an important treatment as it reinforces the importance of home care as well as removing tartar and plaque from teeth. When the child is only a year old, we prefer a lap-top exam. When the child is older, it is better for them to sit independently as it encourages more communication between the dentist and the child, without the child looking for encouragement or security from the parent. Dr. Sacco is very experienced in handling many kinds of young patients in a friendly, understanding and non-threatening way.
For the first visit, a parent or legal guardian must accompany the child, as this person will need to fill out medical and dental health forms. The parent should also provide a list of medications the child is taking and be prepared to discuss any health or behavioural issues. This vital information helps us to safely and effectively treat and manage your child.

Preparing for the First Visit
The parent’s level of anxiety is always the best predictor of a child’s behaviour in the dental chair. Usually, if the parent is nervous, the child will be also.
Here are a few tips to help your child’s first dental visit go smoothly:

  • Tell them about the visit, but don’t go into detail.
  • We often have kid-friendly terms for all of our tools, so it is best to let us answer the child’s questions about dental tools and procedures. We will explain things in a non-threatening, easy-to-understand manner.
  • It is vitally important that you never tell your child that something may hurt.
  • Please don’t tell your child about your own unpleasant experiences.
  • Young children are often fearful. Some are afraid of the unknown, some are shy and some don’t like being separated from their parents. We treat many children in our practice and have a variety of ways to help an anxious or fearful child learn to understand and cope with their dental visits.
  • Explain to your child that the dentist is there to help them with the vital job of keeping their teeth and gums healthy.

We will help eliminate the fear that children have of the dental setting and establish a good dental routine that they can follow their whole lives.