Going to the dentist regularly is for more than just adults and teens. Developing a good relationship with the dentist should happen as early as possible. It’s easy to wonder why you might need to take your baby to the dentist, but dentists recommend that your baby have their first visit before they reach 12 months of age or within six months of their first teeth coming in.
Infant exams are an important part of your developing baby’s health routine. The dentist wants to see your baby right after their first teeth erupt to ensure they are developing properly and are healthy. Oral hygiene is important for overall health, not just the health of the mouth and teeth, so learning how your baby is developing as early as possible is better for their overall health.
You’ve likely had a routine dental exam before, and an infant exam is very similar, though with different goals.
The exam takes around 30 to 45 minutes on average. The dentist will examine your baby visually and gently check the inside of their mouth to check for any abnormalities or dental issues. The primary purpose of the exam is not to look for dental problems but to see that their teeth are coming in as they should and to learn about the baby’s eating habits and overall health and development.
This is important to ensure they get enough nutrition and the right nutrition for their age. It’s also important that your baby feels comfortable with the dentist and enjoys going to the dentist so that when they are older, they will develop healthy habits and a healthy relationship with the dentist and get their routine exams and cleanings.
Parents can also talk with the dentist about feeding their baby, teething, how to help their baby as their new teeth come in, and keeping their baby’s teeth clean, strong, and healthy.