Child Dentistry

Your child’s first visit

Dr. Mead's friendly hygienists provide gentle care for children

Dr. Mead recommends that children have their first “regular” dental visit around their third birthday.  In our experience, children who are used to accompanying their parents to dental visits are ready much earlier.  The first dental visit is usually short and involves very little treatment.  We may ask you to sit in the dental chair and hold your child during the examination.  You may also be asked to wait in the reception area during part of the visit so that a relationship can be built between your child and our team.

We will gently examine your child’s teeth and gums.  X-rays (to reveal decay and check on the progress of your child’s permanent teeth under the gums) are usually taken at a subsequent visit. We may clean your child’s teeth and apply topical fluoride to help protect the teeth against decay.  We will make sure your child is receiving adequate fluoride at home.  Most important of all, we will review with you how to clean and care for your child’s teeth.

Some “First Visit” tips:

  • Take your child for a “preview” of the office.
  • Read books with them about going to the dentist.
  • Review with them what the dentist will be doing at the time of the first visit.
  • Speak positively about your own dental experiences.

During the first visit Dr. Mead will:

  • Examine your child’s mouth, teeth and gums.
  • Evaluate adverse habits like thumb sucking.
  • Check to see if your child needs fluoride.
  • Teach you and your child about cleaning his/her teeth and gums.
  • Suggest a schedule for regular dental visits.

Your child’s first set of teeth

The first baby teeth that come into the mouth are usually the two bottom front teeth.  You will notice this when your baby is about 6-8 months old.  Next to follow will be the 4 upper front teeth and the remainder of your baby’s teeth will appear periodically.  They will usually appear in pairs along the sides of the jaw until the child is about 2 1/2 years old.

At around 2 1/2 years old your child should have all 20 teeth.  Between the ages of 5 and 6 the first permanent teeth will begin to erupt.  Some of the permanent teeth replace baby teeth and some don’t.  Don’t worry if some teeth are a few months early or late as all children are different.

Baby teeth are important as they not only hold space for permanent teeth but they are important to chewing, biting, speech and appearance. For this reason it is important to maintain a healthy diet and daily hygiene.