What to Expect
Along with the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, we recommend your child’s first dental visit be scheduled by his/her first birthday. The purpose of the first visit is to lay the groundwork for a lifetime of excellent oral health and to build a trusting relationship with your child.
We strive to make your child’s first visit to the dentist fun and informative. Much of the time is spent building trust, allaying fears and anxiety, and making your child feel comfortable in a new environment. We will begin by addressing any questions or concerns you may have regarding your child’s oral health, and then we will review your child’s medical and dental history. Afterwards, we will perform a thorough oral examination of the teeth, oral tissues and jaws and take x-rays, if necessary. Next, we will clean your child’s teeth and apply a topical fluoride treatment. Finally, we present our findings, and produce an individualized prevention and treatment plan to give your child the best chance for optimal oral health.
Along with oral hygiene instructions and nutritional counseling, we will also discuss oral growth and development, habits, injury prevention, and orthodontics.
How to Prepare
As a parent, you can help make your child’s first visit to the dentist positive and enjoyable. Inform your child of the appointment in a casual and upbeat way. Avoid using words that can cause unnecessary fear, such as: “needle,” “drill,” “pull,” “pain” and “hurt.” The first visit rarely requires such things, and even should they be necessary at some point, keep in mind that pediatric dentists are trained to convey information in a non-threatening way, helping to keep your child calm and comfortable. We are experienced in working with fearful and anxious children, and we will explain our dental instruments, equipment, and procedures in a non-threatening and constructive way to avoid any negative feelings towards dentistry. Our words and actions are selected carefully and deliberately, allowing us to turn a negative into a positive, so that your child remains calm and becomes interested in the new environment.
A positive attitude can make all the difference. Children are very keen and are able to pick-up on their parent’s anxieties. We recommend that parents remain confident and continually encourage their child before, during, and after the appointment. We suggest parents avoid sharing any negative dental experiences they have had in front of their child.
In addition, we welcome families and friends to drop by for a tour before your child’s first appointment. Our team would love to introduce your child to our office, show him/her around, answer any questions you or your child may have, and let them take a ride in the dental chair.
What to Bring
Please have your New Patient Forms completed prior to your visit. This will help expedite the new patient check-in process.
Please plan to arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment. This will allow time for the completion of any additional paperwork so that your child’s visit remains on time.
It is not uncommon for a child to feel anxious or nervous before their first dental visit. We encourage patients to bring their favorite blanket, stuffed animal, or any other object that is a source of comfort.
A parent or legal guardian should be present during the first visit in order to sign all legal documents and consent to treatment.
My Child Has Special Health Care Needs Or Is Fearful Of The Dentist
We specialize in treating patients with physical, developmental, mental, sensory, behavioral, cognitive, and/or emotional impairments. We have extensive background in behavior guidance. We understand children with special needs may have additional difficulties and exhibit extreme reactions to changes, or sensitivities to particular sounds, sights or textures.
We are highly skilled and experienced in working with special needs children. We look forward to helping you and your child through this new experience both in the office and with suggestions you may find useful at home.
If your child requires more support for his/her dental care, we offer multiple sedation solutions, including nitrous oxide, IV anesthesia, and general anesthesia.
As always, Dr. Fong is available to speak to you about any specific needs or special accommodations before your visit.