First Visit

First Visit pediatric dentist Portland OROur office, as well as the The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Dental Association (ADA), and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), all recommend establishing a “Dental Home” for your child by one year of age. Children who have a dental home are more likely to receive appropriate preventive treatment and routine oral health care.

The Dental Home is intended to provide a place, other than the Emergency Room for dental-related problems.

You can help make the first visit to the dentist enjoyable and positive. If old enough, your child should be informed of the visit and told that the dentist and their staff will explain all procedures and answer any questions. If you are unsure of how to answer a question that your child has, encourage them to ask the doctor at their appointment.  The less detail you share concerning the visit, the better.  Our office makes a practice of using words that convey a certain message, but are pleasant and not threatening to your child.

Try to avoid using words around your child that might cause unnecessary fear, such as:

  • “needle”
  • “shot”
  • “pull”
  • “drill”
  • “hurt”

We have found that parents are oftentimes just as anxious as their children when coming to the dentist.  Therefore, we invite you to stay with your child during the initial examination so that you can get to know Dr. Nelson. During future appointments, we allow you to choose whether you would like to accompany your child for their dental experience. In general, we have found that we can usually establish a closer rapport with your child when you are not present, but if you do accompany your child to treatment rooms, Dr. Nelson asks that you join him as a silent partner. Our purpose is to gain your child’s confidence and overcome apprehension. For the safety and privacy of all patients, other children who are not being treated should remain in the reception room with a supervising adult.

We strive to make each and every visit to our office a fun one!