Lap Exams for Toddlers
Professional dental care starts early. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that your child is seen for their first dental exam no later than their first birthday. However, dental exams can be scary for young patients. At The Dentists at North Cypress, we can help to make the process more comfortable with lap exams.
The Importance of Dental Exams for Toddlers
Dental exams are very important for toddlers. While children lose their baby teeth, they still play many important roles. Baby teeth help your child to eat a wide variety of different foods. They help your child to develop proper speech patterns. They also act as placeholders for the adult teeth, ensuring that the adult teeth erupt into proper alignment. With dental exams for toddlers, we can make sure that their teeth are healthy and that their mouth is developing and growing properly.
What is a Lap Exam?
When you have your dental exams, you sit in the chair and lean back so that we can clean your teeth and examine your mouth. For children, particularly toddlers, this can be an intimidating process. Your child might be too scared to open their mouth or might wiggle around. A lap exam is a way for us to perform an oral examination on your toddler in a safer, more comfortable manner.
With a lap exam, your toddler sits in your lap facing you while you sit in the dental chair. We sit across from you and have your toddler lean back to rest their head in our lap. This way, your child can see you and hold your hands while we examine their mouth.
The Goal of Lap Exams
With a lap exam, your child can feel more comfortable in the office while we examine their mouth. Your child is close to you, can see you, and can hold your hands. When your child is more comfortable, they can relax and sit still. This allows us to examine their mouth more safely. This helps to create a more positive experience for your toddler, which aids in building up their trust in us. After examining their mouth, your child can remain seated in your lap while we discuss any areas of concern with you. We will also take some time to discuss their oral hygiene habits at home, their diet, and any concerns you might have.
What if My Child Refuses to Cooperate?
Even seated in your lap, your child may still be uncomfortable and find it difficult to cooperate. This is okay. We want your child to feel comfortable in our office. If we cannot examine their mouth right away, we will just try again later. Some children need a little more time to warm up. Rather than forcing them, we can talk with them and show them our tools. As your child begins to feel more comfortable, we can try examining their mouth again.
Just like you, your child should have dental visits every six months. The first visits can be scary, though, so a lap exam can help to make them feel more comfortable. For more information about lap exams, and to schedule an appointment for your child, call The Dentists at North Cypress today at (281) 664-8100.