How We Partner With Parents
As a pediatric dental practice, we know that parents are our most important ally. We see your child twice a year, but you as parents and guardians spend every day with your children. It’s you who teaches them how to brush their teeth and reminds them to do it every day, twice a day. It’s you who models good oral hygiene habits at home so they believe in the importance of taking care of their teeth.
We invite you to accompany your child throughout their time in our dental office. From the waiting room to the exam room, and even to the operatory. When it comes time to take X-rays, you can either step out briefly or put on a protective vest yourself and stay right by your child’s side. Children with separation anxiety and even those who suddenly develop it at the dentist’s office, need the comfort of a parent in the room. You can hold their hand and provide a reassuring touch that lets them know you’re there.
When it comes to your child’s dental care needs, we want you to be fully informed and have a clear understanding of what needs to be done to achieve optimal dental health. We will explain procedures and make recommendations for at-home care to prevent oral health problems. Partnering with parents helps establish a foundation for a lifetime of dental health for our patients.
Benefits of Partnering With Parents
Partnering with parents provides a variety of benefits for you and your child:
- Improved dental health. Through partnering with parents we hope to educate you and your child on healthy habits that will improve their dental health now and throughout their lifetime.
- Fewer restorative procedures. We hope to reduce the number of restorative procedures needed by teaching and taking preventive measures against decay and gum disease.
- A better understanding of dental care. When restorative procedures are necessary, we work closely with parents to provide a better understanding of the causes and solutions for dental problems.
- A more comfortable experience for children. Children are more comfortable at the dentist when a parent can be at their side. We believe in creating a calm and relaxing environment where children feel good about their dental care.
Answers to Parents’ Frequently Asked Questions
How do I get my child to remember to brush their teeth?
It can be difficult to make regular brushing a habit. Designate specific times of the day for brushing, such as first thing in the morning and before bedtime. Once a routine is established it becomes easier to remember. You may still need to remind them when it is time to brush and make sure they are doing so effectively.
At what age should my child have their first dental appointment?
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children have their first dental exam by the age of 12 months or within 6 months of the eruption of their first tooth. The first appointment will typically include a very brief examination and cleaning of the teeth that have come in. The main purpose of the first appointment is just to introduce the child to the experience of going to the dentist. Babies and young children can sit on their parent’s lap if it helps.
Can I stay with my child for a filling, root canal, or tooth extraction?
You are encouraged to accompany the child to the operatory in our office for any procedure that is required. We believe it reassures children and helps them feel more comfortable to have a parent there in the room.
What if I would prefer to wait in the waiting room?
Some parents do prefer to wait in the waiting room for a variety of reasons, which is perfectly fine, as long as you and your child are comfortable with that. We can consult with you at the end of the appointment regarding your child’s dental care needs.