Keep Your Toddler’s Smile Bright

While there is a good chance that your toddler has been visiting her pediatrician regularly since the time that she was born, it is possible that she has not yet had her first visit to the dentist. There is no iron clad rule about when a toddler’s first visit to the dentist has to happen because each child’s teeth come in on their own unique schedule. A generally accepted timetable for a child’s first trip to the dentist is within six months of getting her first tooth, or by one year of age at the latest. There are many reasons … Continue reading

Toddler vs. the Dentist

I just took my toddler for her fourth dental visit. I like this dentist. There is a large play structure for the children to use while they’re waiting. This day, unfortunately, was a day that my daughter did not want to play. Instead, she wanted to get into mischief. Two-year-olds are notorious for their lack of listening skills. Every toddler parent I know complains about how his child doesn’t seem to hear anything that he doesn’t want to hear. That describes my daughter while waiting for her turn at the dentist. Jessie got a big kick out of opening and … Continue reading

Toddler and the Dentist

I don’t remember the exact date I went to the dentist for the first time. However, my first dentist memory is forever branded in my mind because I needed two fillings. I freaked out. I remember crying and protesting. The dentist grabbed my face and told me to calm down, so he wouldn’t injure me with the Novocain needle. I’m pretty sure I was in elementary school already when this happened. Texas Health Steps, which oversees how often children in state custody are seen by medical professionals, sets the first dental visit at six months old. I took the last … Continue reading

Are You Afraid of the Big, Bad Dentist?

If you get a little anxious thinking about going to the dentist, you’re not alone. Dental phobia keeps a lot of people from getting the care they need for their pearly whites. There are a lot of different facets to dental phobia. Some of the most common fears involving the dentist’s office include: Embarassment — “I haven’t been to the dentist’s office in years, and my teeth are going to be horrible. The dentist is going to lecture me about what a failure I am.” Pain — “It’s going to hurt when they clean my teeth. I’ll have cavities that … Continue reading

When Should My Child Have His First Dental Visit?

Yesterday I spent the morning at the park with my youngest kids, another mom and her child. As I was trying to navigate pushing two swings on opposite sides of the swing set and avoid getting hit by all of the swings in the middle, my mom friend asked me a good question. “Do you think he is too young to see a dentist?” Her child was three-years old and hadn’t yet been to the dentist. There was an issue with his teeth that she was concerned about, but she wasn’t sure if he was too young to be seen … Continue reading

Dentist Anxiety

There’s been a lot of talk in my life about dentists lately… namely because a coworker at the cats-only boarding facility where I have a part time job just had a heck of a time having one of her wisdom teeth removed. My coworker’s rough time made me think of the rough time Heather had with her wisdom teeth: Dental Horror Story: The Wisdom in Teeth The Horror of Dental Insurance and Teeth Dental Horror Story: Going Back to School Dental Horror Story: The Happily Ever After Part I was lucky that I had a very easy time of it … Continue reading

Preparing a Child for the Dentist—Part Two

Yesterday, I introduced the topic of preparing a child for a trip to the dentist. I talked about how to explain the facts and take away the mystery of what is going to happen by being as honest and open as possible. Another element in preparing a child for a trip to the dentist—even a child who has been before—is to give them the opportunity to ask questions and express their own fears and anxieties. For a child to truly be prepared for something unsettling but inevitable, I think that he needs to have a chance to talk through concerns … Continue reading

Preparing a Child for the Dentist—Part One

After nearly twenty years of parenting (times three) I have arranged and sat through my share of dentist appointments! If I was feeling saucy I might claim to have sat through someone else’s share too! Throw in the braces for one child and nearly two years at the orthodontist and I’ve seen just about everything when it comes to kids and the dentist. Even if your child has been to the dentist before, preparing him or her for the next visit is important. Most kids need a little preparation for a trip to the dentist. Even if you have the … Continue reading

Dental Horror Story: The Happily Ever After Part

Well, in the last week or so I’ve shared with you the trials and tribulations of my summer. I’ve told you about the bad and the ugly where the wisdom teeth were concerned, now let’s flashback to just three weeks ago. I’d done all of my daughter’s back-to-school shopping over the weekend. They’d scheduled my surgery so that by the time we got to meet the teacher on Friday, I would be able to talk some and on her first day of school some of the swelling should be down. I got up early that morning, it was a Tuesday, … Continue reading

The Dentist & The Horror Story

Thank you to Aimee who invited me to share my personal ‘horror’ story here. I’ve been fortunate over the years to not have experienced any great dental emergencies. There was one when I was 19, I’d cracked a tooth due to a car accident, that tooth was cracked so badly that the dentist was unable to rebuild it and so we decided to just extract it – it would be easier. There was the time that I had gone to the dentist for a simple fix and ended up having 4 root canals done on the same day. My daughter … Continue reading