Did you know that the first dental visit is recommended to take place by the age of one but on average, children have their first visit at the age of four?
First dental visits and care from a regular dentist are important factors in looking after the health of your child’s teeth and mouth.

The best time to book you baby in for their first dental visit is when their first tooth becomes visible or when they reach 12 months of age – whichever comes first. While you might think it’s not necessary to book an appointment until your baby has a full set of teeth, which usually takes place by the age of 3, the earlier your child visits the dentist the better. Usually, your child’s first visit to the dentist will involve the taking of their full medical history, and possible discussions about:

  • Teething
  • Brushing techniques
  • Bite (how your children’s teeth come together)
  • Habits such as thumb sucking
  • The risk of decay and how to prevent it
  • Prevention of traumatic injury to your child’s mouth
  • Nutritional advice

ALWAYS be positive about visits to the dentist. Even if you have bad memories of your childhood dental visits, your child is going to enjoy coming to Kiddies Dental Care, and remember that our dental team is well-trained in dealing with babies and young children.

Don’t use the dentist as a threat or punishment. It’s also important to not use bribes in order for the visit to happen. Don’t use words that may instil fear in your child. Refrain from using words such as needles, pain or hurt when talking about the dentist.

Click here to listen to the Watch Your Mouth Podcast

Join host Jimmy Rees, best known as Jimmy Giggle from Giggle and Hoot, as he chats with paediatric dentist Dr Mihiri Silva to discuss first dental visits and child tooth decay. Understand what is involved in your little ones first appointment at the dentist as well as advice to help prevent tooth decay from developing.
Watch Your Mouth is made possible thanks to Extra Oral Healthcare Program. For more oral health information, visit www.ada.org.au/tips.


1. Practice visiting the dentist at home. Children love to play and pretend. This can be a fun way for you and your child to talk about their upcoming appointment. Get some of their toys involved too!

2. Practice counting your child’s teeth. Explain to your child that the dentist will do the same thing. Lay your child back with their head in your lap, have your child practice opening wide for the dentist. Use props such as toothbrushes; spoons make a perfect “dental mirror”. Let your child practice being the dentist and let them check your teeth too.

3. Read children’s books about going to the dentist with your child. Always answer truthfully any questions your child may have about the dentist.


Although you may have prepared your child for their first dental visit, sometimes things can become overwhelming and it’s not uncommon for young children to cry during their first dental exam. Staying calm, relaxed and talking to your child will help with their anxiety; they are surrounded by new sights, smells and sounds, so sometimes this can be a bit scary for some children.

It’s important to explain to your child:

  • We are seeing another dentist, not the same one as last time.
  • You will not be getting any treatment, all you need to do is to sit in the special dental chair, have a little lie down, open your mouth for a few minutes to let the dentist check your teeth with a special mirror.
  • I understand you may be a bit anxious, but explain you will be there with them the whole time.
  • After having a look at your teeth, the dentist will do a lot of talking with mum and dad, and you can go to play with the toys or read a book.
  • A special treat and a giant hug after they have been very brave always helps!

Please allow 30 minutes for your child’s initial appointment.

No, you don’t need a referral to be seen by Kiddies Dental Care. All new patients are either seen by our Oral Health Therapists or Specialist Paediatric Dentists depending on the examination requirement. If you would like to book an appointment simply call our team on 03 9372 8960 or click here to BOOK ONLINE


We have put together some great videos for you to watch with your children about their visit to the dentist. 

Thanks to our wonderful Oral Health Therapist, Carlee.
She works at both the Essendon clinics.
If you would like to talk to her or any of our amazing team, about this or any other questions you may have, please contact us on 03 9372 8960.

Carlee Wooding