First Visit

Your Child’s First Visit

Your child’s first dentist visit is an important milestone, although not one that’s eagerly anticipated by many of our little patients. At Growing Smile, we specialize in pediatric dentistry and understand that oral health is more challenging for children than for adults. This is why we train all of our team members to carefully explain procedures to your child, take the time to listen to their fears, and answer any questions that you or your child might have in a way that they can understand. 

A child’s first dentist visit should occur around six months after the first tooth emerges or at one year of age, whichever comes first. We encourage parents with children under 4 to accompany them and participate in the cleaning. We will ask that you arrive 15 minutes early to complete paperwork, and we will take your child’s medical history. If you are the parent of a special-needs child, please speak with our office staff about any accommodations that you need. We are professionally trained to provide dental care for special-needs children and can make recommendations based on our experience that may help you and your child have a more comfortable visit.

The first visit to Growing Smile will consist of a teeth cleaning and a topical fluoride application. Expect this to take around 30 minutes. We will do a visual exam of your child’s teeth and gums, but no X-rays, unless there is a necessity. We also provide sedation dentistry on an as-needed basis. If this is something that you anticipate needing, please contact our office at (978) 587-3368. We will discuss the process, treatment plan, and insurance coverage and costs.

Some of the equipment in a dentist’s office can look large and scary to small children. To make your child more comfortable prior to their first visit, we recommend:

Scheduling your child’s visit during a time of day when they are rested and calm is ideal. Read age-appropriate books about dental visits and role-play a dentist visit with stuffed toys or dolls. Allow your child to “be the dentist” as well as “be the patient.” Use positive, simple language to describe the dental exam. Focus on encouraging healthy dental habits. Bring a favorite doll or toy to keep your child company.