Follow our tips to ensure that your tot has a tear-free first visit to the dentist.

Your child’s first dental visit

Schedule your sweetie’s first dental visit once her first few teeth arrive, which is ideally at between 12 and 18 months of age.

Explains Dr Trevor Holcombe, a paediatric dentist at Smilefocus, “A quick check at this very early stage will identify factors in your child’s habits and dietary history contributing to their risk level for dental decay.”

Regular visits to the dentist from a young age can encourage lifelong good dental habits, so it’s very important to ensure that your child’s first visit to the dentist is a trauma-free experience.

To maintain a positive vibe, avoid using negative words such as “pain”, “needles” or “drill”.

Follow these guidelines, so junior will have a no-tears experience:

1. Choose a time when your child is fresh and alert, usually in the morning.

2. Talk to your child about the importance of healthy teeth and good oral hygiene and set a good example by letting her see you brushing and flossing properly.

3. Try “playing dentist” with your child – take turns to look into each other’s mouths — so as to build an understanding of the dental examination process.

4. When preparing bubba to go to the dentist, encourage her to pretend she is a roaring lion to get her to open her mouth wide.

5. Explain to your child what the dentist will do and encourage him to give voice to any fears. To maintain a positive vibe, avoid using negative words such as “pain”, “needles” or “drill”.

6. Bring along her favourite toy.

7. Read a story to your little one about someone who had a pleasant dental visit.

8. If you have an older child who is well-behaved during dental visits, bring him or her along to encourage the younger one.

Photo: INGimage

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