Checking the Pearly Whites

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentists recommends that when a child gets their first tooth they should have their first dental visit. Whelp, Marcus' first tooth came in well over two years ago. Know when his first dental appointment was? Yesterday.

To be honest, I'm not exactly sure what was holding me back… Aside from the sheer terror of how the whole experience might go down for the little guy. I'd heard stories from friends who had taken their kids to see the dentist, and the situation ended up less than ideal. My fear of the potential for a tantrum and total melt-down was holding me back.

Finally I bit the bullet. After doing a ton of researching (seriously, I spent almost an entire afternoon scouring Yelp, review sites, and calling offices) for a pediatric dentist I found one that I felt comfortable with before I'd even stepped foot into the office.

As we drove to the appointment my stomach was in knots and I was tossing prayers up, pleading for an episode free experience.

The second we arrived I was immediately put at ease. The entire staff was warm, welcoming, and absoultely amazing with Marcus. Kind. Patient. Understanding. Exactly what every little one (and parent) needs when they experience something new and potentially scary.
When it was time for the actual check up I could not believe how smooth the whole process went for us.
Marcus followed every direction given and answered all questions asked of him. I couldn't help but swell with a little pride as Marcus complied with Dr. Nick as teeth were counted, cleaned, flossed, and a treatment applied.
Marcus still has a long way to go with his teeth brushing, but I was so thankful when the doctor suggested several tips and tricks to try and make the teeth brushing process as efficient and effective as possible.
Of course for Marcus the highlights included picking his own tooth bush, having chocolate tooth paste used to clean his teeth, and picking a few treasures from the treasure chest after the exam.
Toy chest!
It's kind of weird to say, but I'm actually looking forward to our next visit.
High fives from Dr. Nick after a successful check up.
Here are a few tips I found helpful for us prior to and during our visit:
1) We talked A LOT about our teeth and the dentist for about a week leading up to the exam.
2) We talked A LOT about brushing our teeth.
3) We tried the best we could to explain what a dentist did and why we need to see them.
4) Doc McStuffins was watched, and I tried to kind of compare her to seeing a dentist.
5) During the visit I was excited about ev.er.y.thing that Marcus experienced. Everything.

Have you taken your little to see the dentist? If so, how was your experience?


  1. WOW sounds like he did amazing! We took callie to a pediatric dentist around 18mo and she did great but they didn't actually clean her teeth at that age. We haven't been since because around here pediatric dentists are rare and no one wants to see a kiddo before age 3 for a cleaning. So we'll see how that goes this summer haha! Sounds like your prep work went awesome! Oh and to prep for next time there are two doc episodes about teeth/dentist if you get to pre-record them :)

  2. He did so good!!! Girl you have nothing to whoops about Marissa was 6 and Emily was almsot 4 when we went for the first time. That is more like a HUGE #FAIL. I was SO worried that I had jacked them up when I finally made the appointment. I expected mouths full of cavities. Everything was great.

    Glad you got so many pictures. I barely took any (probably my nerves. ;) )

  3. You know, it never crossed my mind that I might need to find a pediatric dentist for this little one when the time comes. I know we need a pediatric doctor, but I always just assumed the dentist I go to would suffice. I have so much to learn!

    I'm so glad Marcus did an awesome job though. I'll admit I really dislike going to the dentist, but I know it's a necessary evil.

  4. ADORABLE pics!!! So fun to have first dentist trip. High five pic with doc rules.

    I didn't know that it was recommended they visit so early. I wonder why. I asked my dentist several times (granted, it's not a pediatric dentist.....actually we don't use any pediatric-only services, so I wonder if that matters?) and they said to bring him when he's three.

    I'm sure it will be a reeeaaal treat no matter when he goes :)))

  5. Great tips. We waited until Henry was about 3 to take him. I honestly just wanted him to understand what he was getting into, and I'm glad we did wait so he could understand. We have some Elmo book that talks about going to the dentist, and it was great to read before we go. Now, he loves it! We just went this week and he was so thrilled to go because he's always had a great experience.

  6. Great tips! Mac is scheduled for his first dentist appointment in a couple months. He's pretty good about brushing his teeth every night, but we could definitely do better in the mornings. And good to know there's a Doc McStuffins episode about going to the dentist. We'll be watching that one!

  7. WOW!!! I'm so impressed with Marcus! I am TERRIFIED of taking Mason to the dentist. I'm 99.9% sure he won't sit still and 99.8% sure he will throw a tantrum and get up out of his seat and walk out. I cannot imagine my experience being as great as yours.
    PS your dentist is pretty awesome for letting you take all those pictures!

  8. Hannah was 3 before I took her. I blame all the moving. :) I was the same as you. I was terrified it would be horrible, and she loved it. She can't wait for her appointments. I am glad things went well for you!

  9. Excellent! It seems that Marcus really got through the process really well. A lot of people couldn't even muster the will to go through a dental visit at such an old age, so it's best that you have your children getting into that and welcome it like so. Anyway, it seems that his first trip to the dentist was a success. I hope all future visits will be as such. Thanks for sharing that, Desiree! All the best to your family!

    Karen Perry @ Brookside Dental Center

  10. I'm glad he was so well behaved! He looks like he's scrutinizing the dentist so hard in those pictures!

  11. I was totally in fear of taking my boys to the dentist. For my first visit I bit the assistant. What can I say, she was mean! :) I feared for no reason b/c they both LOVE the dentist! We had to cancel our scheduled check up 2 x's this year already (once b/c of weather, once b/c of sickness) and they were so mad at me both times! So far, so good. We'll see how Tate handles it, ha! Glad M enjoyed himself! The dentist looks really nice! And, what were those tips he gave you for teeth brushing??

  12. The first visit to the dentist is really a great challenge to a child and to the parents as well. I'm glad Marcus' first dental appointment was a success. Kudos to you for being so supportive and prepared for it! I just hope that all future dental visits be as breezy as that. Thanks for sharing that wonderful milestone, Desiree! All the best to your family!

    Christy Hodges @ Smile Designers

  13. What a great experience you had! My daughter had difficulty at the dentist, she has a sensitive gag reflex. We found a dentist that helped her relax, and was willing to modify some of the treatments to keep my little one from being scared. He did a great job teaching her about dental care too!

    Felipe Roberson @ Philly Dentist