Taking your child to the dentist for the first time can be a nerve-wracking experience for both of you. But it doesn’t have to be! By following these tips, you can help your child feel comfortable and excited about their first dental visit.

Start talking about the dentist early.

Don’t wait until the appointment day to start talking to your child about the dentist. Explain what the dentist does and why it’s important to see them regularly. You can even read books about going to the dentist together.

Make it a fun experience.

Try to make your child’s first dental visit as fun and positive as possible. Let them choose a special outfit to wear and bring their favorite toy along. You can even role-play going to the dentist at home to help them get used to the idea.

Be prepared.

When you arrive at the dentist’s office, take some time to explore the waiting room and let your child see the dentist’s tools. It will help them feel more comfortable with their surroundings.

Answer your child’s questions.

Be honest and answer all of your child’s questions about the dental visit. Don’t sugarcoat things or try to downplay the experience.

Be patient and supportive.

It’s important to be patient and supportive during your child’s dental visit. Let them know that you’re there for them and that everything will be okay.


Taking your child to the dentist for the first time is an important milestone in their oral health journey. By following the tips in this article, you can help your child have a positive and stress-free experience. Remember to start talking to your child about the dentist early, make the visit fun and positive, be prepared, answer their questions, and be patient and supportive. By following these tips, you can help your child develop a healthy smile and a lifetime of good oral health habits.

Don’t hesitate to contact our office. We are here to help you and your child have a positive experience.

Dental Health

Twin studies conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that the average U.S. adolescent of the 1970s had six or seven cavities; his 1990s counterpart, just three. Today’s teenagers are twice as likely to return from the dentist and report, “Look, Ma, no cavities!”—to quote a famous toothpaste commercial of yesteryear.

Dr. Jim Steiner, director of pediatric dentistry at Children’s Hospital in Cincinnati, Ohio, attributes the improvement in young people’s dental health primarily to increased access to fluoridation. “Fluoride reduces tooth decay as well as slows down the decaying process,” he explains. “More than 95 percent of all toothpaste now have fluoride in them, and about 65 percent of our population drinks fluoridated water.”

A related advance is the use of dental sealants, clear or white thin plastic coatings that can be painted onto permanent teeth. As Dr. Steiner explains, “Fluoride protects the areas between the teeth. But it can’t always reach the chewing surfaces of the back molars.” Sealants fill the tiny pits and grooves of those teeth, the site of most cavities. Second molars typically arrive around age twelve. One sealant application costs roughly half the price of a filling.

Teens who do develop cavities have less reason to dread the dentist’s chair than you might have when you were their age. New dental instruments such as the laser and the air abrasion unit make getting fillings virtually painless. Laser therapy doesn’t require anesthesia. Nor do many treatments with the air abrasion handpiece, which resembles a tiny sandblaster. However, the devices can’t be used in all situations, so don’t expect to see the high-speed drill become obsolete anytime soon.

Another advance of interest to young patients is cosmetic. Besides the traditional silver-colored metal alloy used to fill cavities, a composite material can be used so that the color can be tinted to match the teeth.

Orthodontic Problems

Crooked teeth, overbites, and underbites are best corrected with braces during puberty, while the facial bones are still growing. These are usually inherited traits, although some orthodontic problems stem from injuries, years of thumb-sucking or losing one’s baby teeth earlier or later than normal.

How Orthodontic Problems Are Diagnosed

How Orthodontic Problems are Treated

If you were a “metal mouth” as a teenager, you’ll immediately notice that modern dental appliances are less conspicuous than the braces you wore. “Years ago,” says Dr. Jim Steiner, director of pediatric dentistry at Children’s Hospital in Cincinnati, Ohio, “the silver bands that hold the wires had to be placed around all the teeth. That’s no longer done. Nowadays we might band only the first and second molars, and bond brackets directly to the rest of the teeth.” The brackets can be colored to match the teeth. They also come in a clear material, as well as metal. Some patients may be candidates for “invisible braces,” which are worn on the inside of the teeth.

On average, youngsters can expect to wear the appliances for about two years. During that time, they return to the orthodontist on a monthly basis. The doctor will usually tighten the wires at these appointments, in order to increase the tension on the teeth. Any discomfort or soreness afterward can usually be alleviated with an over-the-counter pain reliever.

When braces alone aren’t sufficient to straighten the teeth, a child may have to wear a night brace to bed, to apply pressure externally. Two prongs on the headgear are inserted into a pair of cylinder-shaped metal receptacles constructed on the outer surface of the back molars. Then an elastic band wraps around the back of the head to keep the apparatus in place. Understandably, teens usually aren’t too happy about having to put on the night brace, but parents can reassure them that this is a temporary measure.

After the orthodontist removes the braces, the young person is given a removable retainer to wear for the next six to twelve months in order to maintain the alignment of the teeth. The simple device consists of a metal wire attached to a plastic plate that has been confirmed to fit against the roof of the mouth..


We love our patients and love to help them form healthy dental life that will last them a lifetime. Growing Smiles is a pediatric dentist in AnnaRichardson, Plano, Garland, Murphy we have Pediatric Services in Texas: Early Childhood CarePreventive CareGeneral TreatmentsSedation DentistrySpecial Needs DentistryEmergency Service and Orthodontic (Braces & Invisalign) For more information call us to answer all of your questions so get an appointment today.

Orthodontic problems can affect both children and adults — even those who wore braces when they were young. That’s because teeth are more mobile than you might think. In fact, teeth move very gradually all the time in response to the normal forces of biting and chewing. But the teeth can also be pushed out of proper alignment when, for example, young children develop unhealthy habits such as thumb sucking or tongue thrusting. These and other orthodontic problems usually become apparent around age 7, when the permanent teeth have started to come in. That’s why an orthodontic evaluation is recommended for all kids at this age.

Adults often see their teeth begin to crowd toward the center of the mouth. Your bite may also shift into poor alignment due to a missing tooth. But it’s good to know that no matter what your age, orthodontic treatment is available for all of the common orthodontic problems listed below — provided your teeth and gums are healthy. It’s also important to remember that wearing a retainer after any orthodontic treatment will help preserve the results for as long as possible.

Abnormal eruption

Abnormal eruption is when a tooth emerges through the gum in the wrong place. If the tooth is blocked from growing in fully (a situation called impaction), a minor oral surgical procedure may be required to uncover the tooth before orthodontic treatment begins.


Crossbite is when one or more of the upper teeth bite inside the lower teeth rather than outside. This is usually related to the misalignment of the upper and lower jaws. In a child who is still growing, widening the upper jaw with an orthodontic appliance called a palatal expander may solve the problem.


Crowding results from a lack of space for the teeth to fit normally within the jaws, either because the teeth are too big or the jaws are too small. Possible solutions may include removing some teeth and/or making more room in the jaws with a palatal expander or through a surgical procedure.

Excessive spacing

Excessive spacing may result when one or more teeth fail to grow in, are lost to trauma or disease, or there is a discrepancy between jaw size and tooth size. It’s important to close the gaps because excessive space allows nearby teeth to shift out of position.

Open bite

Open bite occurs when the upper and lower front teeth do not come together when biting, resulting in an open space between the two. This is often the result of tongue thrusting (also called infantile swallowing pattern) and/or prolonged thumb sucking.


Overbite (deep bite) is when the upper front teeth bite too far down over the lower teeth. Sometimes the bite is so deep that the upper teeth cover the lower teeth completely, forcing the lower teeth to bite into the roof of the mouth (palate). This often results from a discrepancy in jaw size.


Overjet (protrusion) is when the upper front teeth extend too far forward or the lower teeth don’t extend far enough forward. This may be related to genetics, improper jaw development, missing lower teeth and/or improper alignment of molars. Thumb sucking or tongue thrusting can exacerbate the problem.


Underbite occurs when the lower front teeth extend past the upper front teeth. It can be caused by overgrowth of the lower jaw and/or undergrowth of the upper jaw. Depending on the severity, treatment may involve conventional orthodontics and/or jaw (orthognathic) surgery.

We love our patients and love to help them form healthy dental life that will last them a lifetime. For more information call us today to answer all of your questions, so get an appointment today.