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Wednesday, January 16, 2008

First Trip to the Dentist

When you have kids, life is full of "firsts."

First tooth, first word, first steps.

We added one to our list this week: Ann Catherine's first trip to the dentist.

We talked about it the night before and I told her the dentist was a doctor who looked at your teeth. She was fine about it. That morning I think she saw it as some type of adventure.

Luckily at your first trip they only look at the teeth and count them. Even so, she cried as soon as they made her lay down. You know, at her age, laying down at the doctor's office isn't usually a good thing. It either means you're sick and the pediatrician is looking at your ears or throat, or it means your getting a shot. So I think the act of just laying down made her pretty uneasy.

The good news is her teeth looked good and she didn't have any cavities. I was pretty happy about that because we brush every day and night, but sometimes you wonder if you're getting them really clean. I was glad to know we were.

One tip for you moms who are just starting to brush your child's teeth. When we first started, I wanted it to be fun for Ann Catherine. So I let her choose a song, and I sing it while I brush her teeth. When the song is over, we're through. It works great because Ann Catherine gets to choose the song (which is BIG at her age) and she is so into me singing (probably because it's so bad!) that she is still while I brush.

Speaking of advice, thanks to those of you who have posted advice about potty training. Every child is different, but you all gave me some great ideas and I really appreciate it. Keep them coming!

1 comment:

Kim said...

Something I did not realize until I took my oldest child (now 14) to the dentist for the first time at age 3, is that they want to start seeing kids around their first birthday. All the books back then said first visit at age 3. The same is true of eye doctors. They can tell if there is a problem at an early age. According to my kids optometrist a lot of eye problems could be fixed if they could catch them when a child was very young. But they need to see them when the kids are 1-3. Most parents never think to bring the kids in before they can read the letters on the eye chart.

I found that by taking them to the dentist when they were that young and going back every 6 months (we do have dental insurance) they were use to it and when they actually started cleaning their teeth it was not scary for the kids. We also chose a pediatric dentist because they had everything set up for kids. Kids size tables and decorations and everyone gets a cheap toy when they are through. Of course the rocket ship with the TV screen inside sitting out in the lobby doesn't hurt when it comes to easing the fears when they come into the office.