The first visit to the children's dentist

la première consultation dentaire

In an ideal world, the first consultation with a paediatric dentist should even take place during pregnancy, before childbirth, to inform moms about the oral phenomena they may encounter during this period particularly rich in hormonal changes. It’s also important to give them the basic oral and dental advice they need to welcome their child as serenely as possible.

Otherwise, this first visit to a child’s dentist is recommended before your child’s first birthday.

This appointment, in the presence of both the child and the parents, is devoted to getting to know the child and his or her family environment, and providing explanations to help prevent the onset of dental problems as far as possible.

Parents are in fact largely responsible for their children’s dental hygiene and diet during their first years of life, and good habits need to be adopted from the outset: choice of toothbrush or toothpaste according to age, techniques for brushing children’s teeth, risks associated with drinking milk or other sugary drinks at night, type of drinks recommended, type of food with high cariogenic potential, frequency of recommended dental check-ups…

environnement dentaire pour les enfants

During the child’s first visit to the pediatric dentist, it is essential that no treatment is performed even if the parents have noticed a dental problem, with the exception of emergency cases.
The main aim of this initial contact is to instill confidence in the child’s new dental environment.

Children are often much more sensitive than we think… rushing them into treatment right away, or giving them too much information, will only be counterproductive in losing their trust.

présentation des outils du dentiste

Ideally, therefore, the first consultation should take place early enough to give the child the necessary explanations in a calm atmosphere. This new dental environment may seem trivial to adults, but not necessarily to children and toddlers: the waiting room, the dental chair (suction, light, washbasin, suction…), the dentist’s tools for each stage of treatment.

In emergency situations (pain, trauma), the pediatric dentist will sometimes be obliged to perform a treatment on the day of the first appointment. Should this be your situation, gentle preparation of the child by his or her parents is very important to reduce anxiety and build confidence.

expliquer l'environenement à l'enfant

How an initial consultation for children works

The first appointment will begin with a discussion to get to know the child and his or her family background. Information on the child’s general health will also be collected before any dental check-ups are carried out.
The main part of the consultation will consist in explaining to the child the environment of the dentist’s office and its instruments in a playful way: chair, light, suction, blowpipe, water, intra-oral camera, X-ray equipment…

peluches modèles dentaires

Once the child is sufficiently confident, we offer a simple examination of the teeth to assess their quality and count them, using basic instruments such as small mirrors. The child will be invited to gradually open his or her mouth and let us look at and touch the teeth if necessary.
In our children’s treatment room, we also use stuffed animals and dental models on which we demonstrate the gestures that will then be performed on the child in a playful and relaxed way.

Classic care, mainly cavity treatment, is explained in detail, showing all the steps involved and the instruments and equipment needed for any future treatment consultations.

Explaining future treatments to children in a playful, positive way will help them to come to appointments more relaxed, without fear of the unknown.
If necessary, a simple polish can be performed at the first appointment, so that children can discover the sensation of having water or slight vibrations in their mouths.

soin des enfants

Complementary examinations are often not only necessary but essential to establish a precise diagnosis: use of diagnocam (X-ray-free imaging) or dental X-rays. If the examination is indicated, we systematically favor this radiation-free imaging technique, which can replace conventional X-rays.
At the end of the first consultation, the children will certainly be congratulated and given a reward to motivate them.

Appointments can be attended by one or both parents. Children can also be left with the dentist for the duration of the consultation. However, we will take care of explanations and administrative formalities for future appointments, ideally in the presence of a legal guardian.

Collaboration with the orthodontist

Close collaboration between pediatric dentists and orthodontists ensures that the child is treated as a whole. If necessary, the paediatric dentist can seek further advice from orthodontic colleagues to assess alignment and masticatory function. In some cases, this can be done as early as the first appointment.

It’s important to refer your child for an orthodontic consultation at the right time. Treatment will be simpler, shorter and less costly…

By targeting the right treatment window, we can offer interceptive treatment to resolve a specific problem, for example: palate too narrow, bite misalignment, jaw misalignment…

These interceptive treatments are often indicated in deciduous dentition, or in the transition phase with a mixture of deciduous and permanent teeth. It is therefore essential not to treat children too early or too late, at the risk of missing out on the growth-related phenomena that provide the best treatment results and the shortest treatment times for the child.