Initial Exam and Digital X-Rays
Understanding what can be expected during your child’s initial examination at Weideman Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics can help to ease any anxiety that your child, or you, may be feeling. You can take steps to make the visit enjoyable and a positive experience. Children who are old enough to understand will likely be quite receptive to the discussion about their initial examination and the digital x-rays that they may need to have.
Words to Avoid Using
The goal of regular dental examinations for children is one part to ensure their teeth and gums are healthy, and one part to acquaint them with the experiences in a dental office. It is better to avoid using words that may undermine the efforts to make the experience upbeat and positive.
Some of these words could include needle, shot, hurt, drill, or pain. These words can often make a child feel anxious, and there are better alternatives for them. Our goal is to gain the trust and confidence of your child.
What to Expect During the Initial Examination
The initial dental examination should, ideally, occur within the first six months that follow the eruption of a child’s first tooth; and no later than by the child’s first birthday. The initial visit and examination will not be invasive at all. The goal is to complete the examination while ensuring the comfort of the patient.
The child’s teeth and gums will be assessed for cavities and any other potential concerns that could risk the health of both the baby teeth and the adult teeth. Our dentist will also be able to provide education and guidance about infant oral health, fluoride treatments, prevention of injury, oral hygiene instruction, and also the impact that diet can have on oral health.
After the initial exam, our dentist will determine a prevention plan that will meet the needs of your child. Subsequent visits will be planned based upon the initial assessment.
The first initial dental exam is typically a lap-to-lap exam. Parents and the dentist will sit face-to-face, with their knees touching. The infant will be slowly lowered back onto the lap of our dentist. Older children will be able to sit in the dental chair and will be able to follow the directions provided by our dentist. Infants and younger children may cry, but it is important to remember just how valuable these initial pediatric dental visits truly are to the long-term dental wellness of your child.
It is suggested that children get x-rays every year, as they play an important role in your child’s dental examination and health. X-rays allow our dentist to diagnose and offer a treatment plan for conditions that may not be visible during a routine clinical examination. They allow for the detection of so much more than just cavities.
As an example, x-rays could be necessary to evaluate cavities between the teeth, erupting teeth, gauge the condition of the jaw, and help with planning the right orthodontic treatment. If any concerns are identified, and treated in their early stages, dental treatment is much more comfortable for the patient, and quite often a more affordable consideration for you.
It is important to our dentist that we minimize radiation exposure for our patients. Digital x-rays offer up to 90% less radiation than traditional x-rays, yet they can produce much higher quality images.
We recommend that our Weideman Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics dentist see your child for their initial appointment before their first birthday. Call us at (916) 962-0577 to schedule your child’s appointment.