Dental Cleanings for Kids

Preparing Your Child for a Teeth Cleaning

It is a source of anxiety for many parents - preparing their child for their first dental appointment. While going to the dentist isn't going to be on par with heading out to an amusement park, at Timber Kids Dentistry & Orthodontics, we make your child's pediatric dental cleaning a fun, relaxing experience, and we want you to help us get them psyched about it!

Get Your Child Excited About The Dentist

Not only is our team committed to creating the best possible dental experience, we also encourage parents to take the lead by explaining to their child what to expect at their first appointment. The first step in helping your child get excited about the dentist is to create dental habits at home from a young age. By age 1, your child should be familiar with brushing (as long as they have at least one tooth). You can make this routine fun by incorporating fun songs, dance moves, or games. As a result, the dentist will be an exciting extension of their daily routine. The more you encourage your child to start healthy habits, the better chance they will have in making these habits their own as they grow!

Your child may have questions about their pediatric dental cleaning, and our team fully expects to answer them all! At home, you can do your best by explaining what will happen at the appointment, assuring them that it is a painless, quick visit, and that it will help keep their teeth shiny and their bodies healthy.  During the appointment, our caring dental hygienists will also walk them through every step beforehand so ensure they are fully prepared and aware of what is happening.

We encourage children to bring a comfort item if it will help, such as a favorite stuffed animal or cherished toy. We also recommend reading stories to your child about dental visits, brushing your teeth, and even singing songs about the tooth fairy to help them associate positive feelings with the dentist. In addition, we recommend avoiding negative words like “pain,” “needle,” and “drill.”

The Process

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The first step of a pediatric dental cleaning is to examine your child's teeth, gums, and mouth for any signs of tooth decay, disease, or other infections. If this is the first appointment, x-rays will be taken to get a baseline of your child's oral health and to give the dentist a clear picture of alignment or jaw issues.

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Next up is the actual teeth cleaning! We start with a tool called a scaler to scrape away plaque and tartar buildup from the gum line. This is important because when plaque is left untreated, it hardens into tartar which cannot be removed through regular brushing and flossing, and can lead to gum disease.

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Finally, we will brush and polish your teeth with an electric-powered toothbrush and gritty toothpaste that comes in fun flavors for your child to choose from. We then floss all of their teeth and show your child techniques they can use at home to keep their teeth healthy. We recommend applying Fluoride at the end to protect your kid’s teeth from cavities and strengthen their enamel.

Creating a Relaxed Experienced

Having the right expectations helps all of us prepare for unknown situations- and our children are no different. Telling them exactly what to expect during their first pediatric dental cleaning is the best way to prepare your child for their visit. Our team is highly trained and we love working with children. We are happy to answer any of their questions in a way that will alleviate their fears and get them excited for their appointment.

The entire staff at Timber Kids Dentistry & Orthodontics is passionate about oral health and we are thrilled to let your child know why there’s nothing to worry about during their visits. Our office is fully equipped with amenities that make the dentist a much more pleasant experience, such as being able to watch TV during their treatment or playing with toys in our lobby while they wait to be seen. 

If your child suffers from dental anxiety, a low pain tolerance, or has a sensitive gag reflex, we also offer to help them relax. You’re always free to join your child during their appointment and can even hold them in your lap if necessary.

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How Often Should Your Child Visit The Dentist?

The ADA recommends having a dental cleaning and checkup every 6 months, starting as young as age 1 or whenever their first baby teeth appear. This helps keep plaque and tartar buildup minimal to prevent tooth decay and cavities.

Routine visits are also vital for the early detection of any gum diseases or oral cancers, as many of these are reversible when caught early. Cleanings and checkups are cost-effective, minimally invasive, and relatively fast treatments that prevent serious complications in the future that can cost you a lot more money and be much more invasive.

If your child is due for their bi-annual dental cleaning and checkup then we encourage you to schedule an appointment with us at Timber Kids Dentistry & Orthodontics.

Don’t Brush Off Preventive Care!