Getting your child off to a good start is important to ensure good dental habits last throughout their life. Many cases of dental fear and anxiety begin in childhood and can prevent your child from seeking dental care when they need it – even well into their adulthood.
At Tooth Doc Family Dentistry, your preferred dental office in Herndon, VA, we understand the importance of building a good relationship between your child and the dentist from a young age.
Your Child's First Dental Visit
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends a first dental visit within six months of your child's first tooth coming in or no later than one year of age. Many find this surprisingly young, but this serves to cultivate a positive association between your child and the dentist from a very young age.
Another reason why we emphasize early visits is because of the recent rise in the incidence of toddler tooth decay, known as "baby bottle caries." Treating this decay early prevents a painful cavity and teaches your child the importance of good oral health.
During the first "well baby" visit, we will allow your child to explore the dental examination area. You can help prepare your child for this visit by playing dentist: get your child to practice “opening wide” while you shine a flashlight in their mouth and count their teeth. Dr. Ahmad will perform an examination to ensure there are no early signs of decay.
Meeting the Unique Needs of Children in Dentistry
Our Herndon dental office staff has several years of experience in pediatric dentistry. We understand the special needs and challenges of treating children and how to meet those needs in a positive manner. Your children are encouraged to ask questions and learn more about how the dentist keeps their teeth clean and healthy. Regular pediatric exams also ensure that your child learns proper home care techniques at a young age.
If your child has special needs or any other requirements, we are happy to accommodate them. Dr. Ahmad is experienced in working with special needs patients, and we can make arrangements to ensure your child's visit is a success. Just be sure to let us know what we can do to make things easier for you and your child.
Are Sealants a Good Idea?
While we do our best to ensure our children eat a healthy diet and take care of their teeth, most children will sneak a sugary treat now and again, and their brushing habits may not be perfect yet. To give them an extra layer of protection against decay, we recommend dental sealants in many cases.
Dental sealants are a thin, protective film applied to the teeth, most commonly the permanent molars and pre-molars. These sealants should be applied as soon as your child's permanent molars have grown in for the greatest effectiveness. Correctly applied dental sealants can help prevent decay for up to ten years, with regular check-ups to ensure the sealant is still in place.
Remember, dental sealants are not a replacement for good oral care! Supervise your child during their nightly brushing and flossing routine to ensure they are properly caring for their teeth.
Keep Your Child's Teeth Healthy and Strong with Pediatric Treatments
Our Herndon dental office offers a full range of pediatric services from cleanings and sealants to extensive restorations, depending on the needs of your child. Call our office today to schedule an appointment and learn more about the pediatric services available.