Your Child's First Visit

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A Lifetime Of healthy Smiles Starts In Our Littleton Office

Along with the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, our dentists, Dr. Scott Pankratz and Dr. Kyle Klepacki, recommend that a child’s first dental visit be scheduled by his/her 1st birthday. It is very important to make the first visit as positive and enjoyable for the child as possible. We want your child to enjoy getting to know our doctors and staff and be comfortable at all times. A pleasant, comfortable first visit builds trust and helps put the child at ease during future dental visits.

Even though there may only be a few baby teeth visible at at age 1, there are plenty of things we can start working on — including the development of healthy habits that will make future visits to the dentist far more pleasurable. Also, unfortunately, some kids develop tooth decay at an early age. We will be on the lookout for cavities — but that's only one reason for an early visit to our office. Equally important is reviewing the proper ways to care for a young child's mouth, going over your child's developmental milestones, and discussing the importance of good oral hygiene.

Preparing for the Big Day

The way kids seem to pick up on their parents' feelings sometimes seems uncanny; so, if you're nervous about going to the dentist yourself, try not to let it show. Generally, during this visit we'll simply be talking with you and your child, looking in his or her mouth, and making oral health assessments. It's best to tell your child what to expect beforehand, without making too big a fuss about it. Let your child know that the doctors and staff will explain everything in detail and will be happy to answer any of their questions. You could even build some excitement by helping them get ready for “the big day.”

When you come in, it's a good idea to bring a comforting toy, just in case of fussiness. We also encourage parents to prepare and bring in a list of their questions as well. If possible, leave other kids at home, so we can concentrate on the new patient — but if you can bring another adult along, it may free your attention to focus on your child's oral health. Likewise, we request that new patient forms be completed in advance, which will save time and effort on the day of the visit.

The Checkup

When you and your child are comfortably seated in the office, we'll spend a few minutes getting to know each other and explaining what we will be doing. Then, we'll perform a gentle examination of the mouth. We will be looking for any early signs of dental problems such as tooth decay, and assessing the risk that your child may develop the disease in the future. Often, this kind of risk assessment can help us prevent — and even reverse — the early stages of tooth decay, without any drilling.

Finally, we'll discuss various ways to keep your child's oral health in top condition. For instance, we may talk about how diet, eating habits and oral hygiene practices can help prevent tooth decay, the most common chronic disease of childhood. That's an important subject for everyone — even more so if your child is at greater risk. If any treatments (such as fluoride) are needed, we will explain what they are and why we recommend them. We will also review tips on cleaning and brushing effectively, and we'll schedule a follow-up visit as required.

Many habits are developed early in life. That's why it's important to “get it done by age one.” So when it's time for your child's first visit… don't hesitate! Please contact us to schedule an appointment. You'll be glad you came in.

Make Sure Your Child's Teeth Are Healthy & Protected Early

When it comes to your child’s oral health, the sooner good habits begin the better off they will be

in the long run. Early detection and proper care is key, and the team at SWPDO is committed to

making your experience as easy and fun as possible. Dr. Klepacki and Dr. Pankratz are widely

known in Littleton, Colorado for both their expertise and bedside manner. Schedule your child's first visit today, and find out for yourself why we are known as the place “Where Smiles Grow Up!”

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