According to the Australian Dental Association, children should start going to the dentist when their teeth start appearing or when they reach 12 months old — whichever comes first.
It’s an exciting milestone when a baby’s first teeth start coming through! However, remember that it is also an individual one, so don’t worry if they appear later or earlier than others their age. Normally it’s around 6-8 months but make a visit by 12 months old to be safe.
There are many important health benefits to early dental checkups for children. Aside from checking your child’s teeth, it’s also a chance to observe the tongue, gums, lips, bite and oral tissue.
In addition to the health benefits, it will also help your child become accustomed to visiting the children dentist. Experiencing the smells and sounds of a dental practice while they are young will start positive associations early. This will make them more comfortable as they grow up and help build good oral hygiene habits for when they become adults.
We are trained to deliver dental care in a fun way for kids that helps them to feel comfortable. We want them to leave with a big smile on their face!
If you have any concerns regarding the oral health of your child, you should book an appointment as soon as possible. Better to be safe than sorry with your little one.
Here are five tips to help you with your child’s first dental visit.
- Make the first visit a routine check-up rather than due to a toothache.
- Bring a favourite toy or blanket for them to play with during their visit, this can be a great distraction technique.
- Before the appointment, making it sound fun by using terms like “the tooth fairies’ friend” or “ride in the dental chair”
- Consider having an older sibling accompany them for additional support.
- Avoid using the dentist as a deterrent for misbehaviour. Similarly, don’t scare your children into brushing their teeth regularly. For example “if you don’t brush your teeth the dentist will pull your tooth out!”
What Is The Child Dental Benefits Schedule?
Here at Newstead Smiles, we bulk bill dental treatment for patients who are eligible for the Child Dental Benefits Schedule (CDBS) through Medicare. Children between the ages of 2 and 17 have access to a benefit of $1,013 (over a 2-year period) for services such as cleaning, x-rays, filling and much more. This means no out-of-pocket costs for claimable treatment.
The two year period starts at the beginning of the calendar year and there is no rollover. That is, if there is any of the $1,013 left at the end of the two years it cannot be used in the next two year period.
In order to claim the CDBS, your child must be between 2 and 17 and must receive the relevant Australian Government payment — such as Family Tax Benefit A payments — at any point during the calendar year.
Wondering if you are eligible? Let us know if you are planning to receive treatment under this scheme when you book your appointment and our team organise the necessary paperwork. This will make sure you don’t reach your limit and don’t have to pay any extra expenses. Additionally, you can check online by login into your MyGov account (linking Medicare may be required).
At Newstead Smiles, all children’s check-up and clean appointments (including x-rays if needed) are capped at $149.