Children's Oral Health

When should I schedule my child's first dentist appointment?

A Answers (5)

  • The ADA recommends that parents take children to a dentist no later than their first birthday and then at intervals recommended by their dentist.
  • A answered
    Even though your little cutie will eventually lose all those sweet baby teeth, it’s still important for kids to have oral health checkups. Your pediatrician can do this early on, but your child will need to start going to a dentist by age two or three (or sooner if there are signs of tooth decay).

    From The Smart Parent's Guide: Getting Your Kids Through Checkups, Illnesses, and Accidents by Jennifer Trachtenberg.
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  • A , Dentist, answered
    Once teeth begin to appear, you should start thinking about scheduling your child’s first dental appointment. Most dentists recommend the first visit around age three; earlier if you notice any staining or have other concerns.
  • The best time to have a child’s first dental check up is by age one or within six months of the eruption of the first teeth. This is the best time to begin learning about preventive treatments and steps parents can take to help assure a life time of healthy smiles for their child. 

    This is a relatively new recommendation by the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Dental Association, yet many dental and pediatric health care providers are still not aware of this recommendation and or have not completed the necessary training to confidently provide this essential preventive service. We now know that the most common chronic childhood disease, dental caries, can actually be passed on from person to person and early prevention is key to helping assure every child’s most precious gift, the magic of their smile is protected through now well documented effective measures.  (See Answers to questions, why age one dental visit? for more details.)
  • A answered
    You should schedule you're child's first dental appointment by the time she reaches her first birthday--or a few months after her first tooth comes in. Pediatric dentists are best for little teeth, because they specialize in treating infants and children.

    Visiting a dentist when your baby's first teeth erupt can help catch problems early, when they are easier to treat.

    Even after you start taking your child to the dentist, it's important to keep practicing dental hygiene at home. To prevent cavities and other problems, be sure to keep brushing your baby's teeth and gums every day.
Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.
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