1st Visit to Mila Cohen
Many parents aren’t sure when they should take their child to their first visit.
Most think they should make the initial visit much older than is actually recommended by dental professionals. In fact, to ensure your kids grow up with a healthy respect for their teeth and a solid foundation in prevention and dental care, take your kids to see Dr. Cohen within six months of their first tooth appearing — or no later than one year old.
Even though the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends an early first visit for children, the average age of a first dental visit in the United States is 2.6 years old, which is far too late.
Early initial visits are important because they can prevent a lot of bad oral habits and unnecessary dental conditions.
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Early Dentist Visits Are Important
When it comes to your kids’ initial appointments with Dr. Mila Cohen, the earlier, the better for everyone. These visits set the foundation of your child’s oral health habits by giving your dentist a chance to:
- Educate you about the importance of caring for your kid’s teeth
- Teach your child about chewing correctly and eating healthy
- Catch any bad habits early
- Explain the importance of primary teeth, also known as baby teeth
Baby Teeth Are Important!
One of the reasons parents don’t schedule early dental checkups for their kids is because they believe incorrectly that baby teeth are not important because they’re replaced by adult teeth. Baby teeth are important because:
- They help with speech development.
- They allow your child to chew and eat healthy food.
- They help the adult teeth grow in properly.
- Good habits for baby teeth are carried into caring for adult teeth.
Preparing Your Kids for the First Visit
One of the benefits of bringing your children in at a very young age is they’re too young to be nervous. Each visit to Dr. Mila Cohen of True Dental Care for Kids & Teens gets easier, even with normally nervous or shy children. To help your kids feel less nervous about visits, try the following:
- Start young and keep visits regular. Having that initial visit when they’re too young to be nervous helps introduce them to your dentist, which starts their relationship. Then, make sure you schedule regular visits so appointments seem like a common event.
- Take your children to your dentist appointments. Allow your children to see how you go to the dentist, too. Maybe your dentist will allow them to look into your mouth. Allowing your kids to see how you react to the dentist and have your teeth cleaned adds to the normality of the situation.
- Ask your dentist what he’ll be doing. If you get details from your dentist, you can explain exactly your children can expect, eliminating surprises.
- Incorporate dentist play. Take turns pretending to be a dentist at home. Let your kids count your teeth and use a little mirror to look at hard-to-reach places. This further makes the actions of the dentist seem common.
- Time the appointment well. Make sure the dentist appointment isn’t during (or right before) naptime. And schedule it when your children won’t be hungry. Take your time getting ready for the appointment so they aren’t rushed.
What to Expect at the First Visit
Your child’s very first appointment with Mila Cohen is mostly to present an opportunity to get to know the dentist and be comfortable in the office setting. It’s usually very short and doesn’t involve any treatment. For some children, it’s helpful if you’re with them in the examination area. Other kids behave better when they have the chance to interact with the dentist on their own. Your pediatric dentist can help determine which of these two scenarios is best for each child.
During the examination portion of the appointment, your kids dentist examines existing teeth, the overall bite, gums, jaw and oral tissues — looking for any potential problems. The dentist also allows your child to ask any questions. It’s important to start their relationship off on the right foot and take the time to get comfortable with each other.[pgcallout]
Topics Your Dentist Discusses
We are here to help you educate and reinforce good oral habits with your kids. Some of the topics your dentist discusses with your kids include:
- Bad oral habits such as thumb sucking and thrusting
- Good oral habits such as brushing and flossing
- Fluoride Treatment
- Nutrition and how it affects dental health
- Preventing accidents to the teeth and mouth
- Importance of regular checkups
While your children are really young — definitely before they’re six — it’s recommended that they see their kids dentist in New Jersey every six months. You can take them more often for injuries, falls or other emergencies.
The Difference Between a Pediatric Dentist and a Regular Dentist
Childrens dentists have two additional years of training after dental school specifically for training related to working with children. They have training in children’s behavior, physical growth, dental development, and treatments of children’s teeth and mouths.
Additionally, they’re trained in the sensitivity of children’s mouths and in the tendency kids mouths have for change while growing with the rest of the body. Pediatric dentists learn how to help ease young children and children with special needs. Their offices are often decorated for children to make appointments more playful and fun.
Choosing the Best Pediatric Dentist in New Jersey
You want the best care for your children. You want them to have a positive experience with their dentist so that checkups are pleasant for years to come. Choosing the dentist in New Jersey involves looking for:
- The number of years in practice
- Center for dentistry schooling
- Awards and accolades
- Recommendations from other parents
- Having a pleasant-looking office
- Taking the time to encourage your child
- Genuine interest in the well-being of your child’s dental health
Finding the right pediatric dentist is important, so take the time to find one that’s right for both you and your child. Get to know Dr. Mila Cohen of True Dental Care for Kids and Teens.