Grin and Bear It, My Babies Visit the Dentist

Just say CHEESE! If you’ve taken your child to see the dentist, you may have an idea where I’m going with this… A trip to the dentist conjures up scary and frightening thoughts for many, from children to adults. I’ll be the first to admit getting my teeth cleaned, X-Rays and my gums poked and prodded isn’t my idea of a spa day, but  it also isn’t the end of the world. I know of peers who to this day still need “laughing gas” and other aides to get through a routine check-up at the dentist, and for those that get more involved procedures — think “deep cleaning,” I get it, it’s no fun.

For whatever reason, I assumed it wasn’t a necessary thing ’til they were like 3 years old. Well turns out pediatricians now recommend dental visits when they hit the big ONE, or earlier if you see a potential problem. I had missed that memo and took them for their first visit this week at 1.5 and 2.5 years old. However, since my mother instilled good oral care into my brain as a child, I have been diligent about having my kids brush and wash their gums since before they had teeth, I’ve been “anal” about when they needed to stop using a bottle and pacifier, as well as only allowing them to have watered-down apple juice.

I did a search for a pediatric dentist when it came to making my appointment. Our pediatric office offered a recommended list, so I went off of that and then it basically came down to insurance, location, appointment availability and did I think their website made them appear “child-friendly.” Of all my own personal childhood memories, I do remember my visits to the pediatric dentist and it’s always stuck with me. Everything from the laughing gas while I got my teeth cleaned to the cute wooden horsey where they kept all the prizes you got to pick from when the appointment was done.

Anyway, I did find one that allowed me to bring both of my boys at the same time and I did my best to prepare them ahead of time. For at least a week before we went I kept reminding them that we were going to see the “teeth doctor,” and they would just need to say ‘cheese’ while he looked at their smile. We practiced how to open wide, stick out your tongue and say “Ah,” and I assured them it would be no big deal.

To find out how my baby boys did when it was time to get in the dental seat, CLICK HERE!

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