Pediatric Dentistry Mt Airy MD

What is a Pediatric Dentist?

The pediatric dentist has received an extra two to three years of specialized training after dental school, and is dedicated to the oral health of children from infancy through adolescence. The very young, school-aged, and teenagers all need different approaches in dealing with their behavior, guiding their dental growth and development, and helping them avoid future dental problems. The pediatric dentist is best qualified to meet these needs.

Pediatric Dentistry Treatments in Mt. Airy, MD

First Visit

New patients must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.

New Patient Health History (Pediatric Dental Patients Only)

As recommended by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Academy of Pediatrics, we advise parents to schedule their child’s first dental visit at about one year of age or when the first teeth erupt into the mouth! This is now the new standard for giving your child a chance to be cavity free. It is very important to make the first visit as positive and enjoyable for the child as possible. We want your child to enjoy getting to know our doctors and staff and be comfortable at all times. A pleasant, comfortable first visit builds trust and helps put the child at ease during future dental visits. Let the child know that the doctors and staff will explain everything in detail and will answer any questions he/she has. Children should be encouraged to discuss any fears or anxiety they feel.

Parents should not make a big deal out of the visit and refrain from using any words that could cause unnecessary fear, such as “needle” or “drill.” We are experienced in dealing with children with anxiety and can explain treatment procedures in a positive and pleasant manner to avoid any anxious or negative feelings toward dentistry.

We will record the child’s dental and medical history, complete a comprehensive examination and discuss any findings with you. We will also review the importance of maintaining a good dental health program with you and your child to ensure a healthy and beautiful smile for life!

We anticipate age appropriate behavior. For instance, your two year old child does not like to sit still for even a minute. They may be unhappy or even cry when you hold them for longer than they want to be held. Children will usually work their way through it with our compassionate encouragement. Thank you for your cooperation.

What to Expect

As soon as you enter our office, you will notice that dentistry for children has changed in many ways. Start your visit by registering at the pediatric dental front desk. You are on your way to a great first experience. Our open reception area is a welcoming room filled with activities, videos and electronic games to engage and relax your child. Our world class pediatric dental and orthodontic office is designed uniquely for children and their parents. From the very first dental visit at their first birthday, we treat every child in our practice as if they are our own. You’ll definitely see “big kids” in our office too, because most of our patients stay with us through college age!

First Visit Suggestions:

We would like to make a few suggestions to prepare your child for the initial visit:

  • First, present the visit as an exciting experience (for yourself) and for your child.
  • Second, tell the child that the hygienist “will count”, “brush”, and “take pictures of their teeth.” By explaining the exam and the cleaning in these terms, your child will better understand the situation.
  • Try to be relaxed and at ease. Your child will sense any anxiety on your part.
  • It is our job to make this the best positive experience possible. Avoid negative phrases such as “hurt”, “drill”, “pull”, and “shot”. This initial examination involves nothing uncomfortable and should be perceived by the child as non-threatening.
  • Assure your child that the doctor will be gentle and friendly. Please do not tell your child that “the dentist will not hurt”, as this probably would not otherwise have been a concern.
  • We ask parents to assume the role of a silent observer. Your presence is greatly enhanced if you play a passive role. If more than one person is speaking to the child they may become confused. Cooperation and trust must be established directly between the doctor and your child and not through you.
  • For the safety and privacy of all patients, other children who are not being treated should remain in the reception area with a supervising adult.
  • Cell phone use is distracting to your child and others. Please refrain from using your cell phone in the office.
  • Food and drinks are sources of contamination and compromise our standards of infection control. Therefore, please do not bring food or drinks into the office.
  • Try not to schedule appointments at nap-time. Just as you and I dislike being disturbed from our rest, so do the little ones. Bring them in the early morning before naptime.
  • If you know your child is not feeling well and has an elevated temperature, bringing them here is not good judgment for two reasons (1) Your child will be miserable and not have a very good experience and (2) Your child will probably infect the other children in the practice.

What About Parents Present in the Dental Treatment Areas?

Our practice philosophy is child-centered. We want you to be with your child during their visits with us. In fact, we insist on your presence because we want you to be by their side while they and you learn how to care for their smile. We welcome you in the dental treatment rooms and we encourage your participation throughout your child’s care. Let us know how we’re doing, so we can give you and your child the care you expect and deserve.

Scheduling Appointments

We would like to see all school-age patients after school: however, this is not possible. We are aware of school policies which make it more difficult for children to be out of school for any reason. However, MEDICAL and DENTAL appointments are EXCUSED ABSENCES with a doctor’s school pass and signature stating the child was in the office. We will be happy to provide that for you at your request. Missing school can be kept to a minimum when regular dental care is continued.

The office attempts to schedule appointments at your convenience and when time is available. Preschool children should be seen in the morning because they are fresher and we can work more slowly with them for their comfort. School children with a lot of work to be done should be seen in the morning for the same reason. Since appointed times are reserved exclusively for each patient we ask that you please notify our office 24 hours in advance of your scheduled appointment time if you are unable to keep your appointment. Another patient, who needs our care, could be scheduled if we have sufficient time to notify them. We realize that unexpected things can happen, but we ask for your assistance in this regard.