First Visit

Infant Glowing EyesOur office, as well as the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Dental Association (ADA), and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) all recommend establishing a "Dental Home" for your child by age one. Children who have a dental home are more likely to receive appropriate preventive and routine oral health care.

You can make this first visit to the dentist enjoyable and positive. If old enough, your child should be informed of the visit and told that the dentist and his staff will explain all procedures and answer any questions.

It is best if you refrain from using words around your child that might cause unnecessary fear, such as "needle", "shot", "pull", "drill", or "hurt". The office makes a practice of using words that convey the same message, but are pleasant and non-frightening to the child.

For new patients under age 4, it is important for us to establish a relationship with both the child and the parent. We have developed a "graduated or transition" plan as follows:

Knee-to-knee exam (ages 0-3): This is an exam done with the child sitting in Mom or Dad's lap and is used to help educate parents on making the home care experience more efficient and comfortable for both child and parent.

Transition Room exam (ages 3-4): This exam is usually done closer to the child's fourth birthday to help prepare them for going to the treatment area. Mom and/or Dad still come back to the transition room but this time the child sits in the dental chair. This helps the child gain confidence while allowing continued parent/staff/child interaction.

For new patients over age 4, we ask that you allow them to accompany our staff through the dental experience. We are all highly experienced in helping children overcome anxiety. Separation anxiety is not uncommon in children, so please try not to be concerned if your child exhibits some negative behavior. This is normal and will soon diminish. Studies and experience have shown that most children over the age of 4 react more positively when permitted to experience the dental visit on their own and in an environment designed for children.

We understand the importance of trust in your dental care team. It is our goal to make your child's dental experience pleasant, and hope that this will help him/her look forward to each dental visit.

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