Here at Dentalcare West, we’re a family-friendly practice and welcome children of all ages with a friendly, calm and positive environment.
Your child will learn about caring for their teeth in a way they can understand. We like to make their appointment that extra bit special by inviting them to watch their favourite show during treatment, plus reward stickers and show bags to take home.
Your child's first visit
Your child’s appointment is tailored to their personality and age. We want them to go home feeling really positive about visiting us, so we use lots of encouraging, positive language to help build trust and make their visit enjoyable. Once your child is settled in-chair (which we describe as a rocket ship to our littlest visitors!), we pop on their favourite cartoon or TV show.
Our dental practitioner will count their teeth, teach them how to brush and, if your child is over the age of two, we will also perform a clean, fluoride treatment, and take any necessary x-rays. We also examine your child’s face and jaw for signs of mal-alignment. We’ll then show your little one techniques to help get the length of time for effective brushing right
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: When should my little one have their first check-up?
A: A good time to bring your child for their first visit should is at around 12 months of age or at the first eruption of their teeth. However it is never too late to have a first visit.
Q: How often should my child visit the dentist?
A: A check-up every six months is recommended in order to prevent cavities and other dental problems. If needed, we can discuss a customised plan based on your child’s dental needs.
Q: Are dental x-rays safe for my child?
A: Dental x-rays (also called radiographs) present very little risk. We are especially careful to minimise the amount of radiation to which children are exposed. Lead aprons and high-speed film are used to ensure safety and limit the amount of radiation.
Q: What are sealants and how do they work?
A: Sealants work by filling in the crevasses of the chewing surfaces of the teeth. This helps prevent food particles becoming lodged in the teeth and causing cavities. The application is fast and comfortable and can effectively protect your child’s teeth for many years.
Q: What should I use to clean my baby's teeth?
A: A soft-bristled toothbrush with a small head, preferably one designed specifically for infants, should be used at least once a day before bedtime. We can provide you with a free brush suitable for your baby.
Q: Is thumb sucking and/or dummies harmful for my child's teeth?
A: Thumb and pacifier sucking habits will generally only become a problem if they go on for a very long period of time. Most children stop these habits on their own, but if they are still sucking their thumbs or fingers past the age of three, your dentist can discuss a plan with you.
Q: Are baby teeth important?
A: Baby teeth (or first teeth) are important because they help children chew comfortably and speak clearly. They also assist in creating the path that permanent teeth follow when they erupt.
Q: When should we use toothpaste and what amount should we use?
A: Prior to the ages of two to three years you can clean your child's teeth with just water and a soft-bristled toothbrush. At around three years of age, it’s a good time to introduce a small amount of toothpaste to your child’s brushing routine. Ensure you observe your child and make sure that no more than a pea-sized amount is used. Encourage your child to spit out excess toothpaste after brushing.
Q: How do I know if my child is having enough fluoride?
A: If your little one is not getting enough fluoride through water (especially if your child drinks bottled water without fluoride), then fluoride supplements may be prescribed. Talk with us if you are unsure or would like more information.
Q: How can I ensure my child's diet is ‘tooth friendly'?
A: Aside from ensuring your child has a balanced diet appropriate for their age, it’s also important to limit the servings of sugars and starches in their daily diet. Sugar hides in all sorts of everyday foods such as tomato sauce, dairy foods and juices. It’s a good idea to check food labels and avoid foods and drinks that are high in sugar.
Q: What should I do if my child has a toothache?
A: First, rinse the aggravated area with warm salt water and rest a cold compress against the face if it is swollen. Offer child-suitable pain relief if needed and make an appointment with our team as soon as possible.
Q: What can I do to protect my child's teeth during sporting events?
A: Soft plastic mouthguards can be made for your child to protect their teeth, lips, cheeks and gums from a sport related injury. A custom-fitted mouthguard is significantly more effective than generic options. Find out about custom-fitted mouthguards here.
Q: What should I do if my child falls and loses a permanent tooth?
A: The most important thing to do is to remain calm and composed. Try to find the tooth. Hold it by the crown instead of the root and try to reinsert it in the socket. If that is not possible, put the tooth in a glass of milk. Contact us for further instructions.
Q: What should I do if my child's tooth is chipped or fractured?
A: Again, remain calm and contact us immediately. Quick action can save the tooth, prevent infection and reduce the need for extensive dental treatment. Rinse the mouth with water and apply cold compresses to reduce swelling. If you can find the broken tooth fragment, bring it with you to the appointment.