top of page
  • What should my child and I expect to happen at our first appointment?
    Your child's first visit will consist of an examination, cleaning, fluoride application and X-rays if indicated. Consultation with the dentist, oral hygiene instructions and any other necessary visits will be discussed. For very young children, the examination will be done with the parent in a consultation room.
  • What is the difference between a pediatric dentist and a family dentist?
    Pediatric dentists are the pediatricians of dentistry. A pediatric dentist has two to three years of specialty training following dental school and limits his/her practice to treating children. Pediatric dentists are primary and specialty oral care providers for infants and children through adolescence, including those with special health needs.
  • What should I do if my child has a toothache?
    First, rinse the irritated area with warm salt water and place a cold compress on the face if it is swollen. Give the child acetaminophen for any pain, and schedule an appointment to see a dentist as soon as possible.
  • How often does my child need to see the dentist?
    A check-up every six months is recommended in order prevent cavities and other dental problems. However, your pediatric dentist can tell you when and how often your child should visit based on their personal oral health.
  • How do I make my child's diet safe for his teeth?
    Make sure your child has a balanced diet. Limiting the servings of sugars and starches will also aid in protecting your child’s teeth from decay. You may also ask your dentist to help you select foods that protect your children’s teeth.
  • How do dental sealants work?
    Sealants work by filling in the deep grooves on the chewing surfaces of the teeth. This prevents food particles from getting caught in the teeth, causing cavities. The application is fast and comfortable and can effectively protect teeth for many years.
  • How do I know if my child is getting enough fluoride?
    Have your dentist evaluate the fluoride level of your child’s primary source of drinking water. If your child is not getting enough fluoride internally through water (especially if the fluoride level is deficient or if your child drinks bottled water without fluoride), then your dentist may want to prescribe fluoride supplements.
  • What can I do to protect my child's teeth during sporting events?
    Soft plastic mouth-guards can be used to protect a child’s teeth, lips, cheeks and gums from sport related injuries.
  • How safe are dental X-rays?
    Very safe. There is very little risk in dental X-rays. Dentists are careful to limit the amount of radiation to which children are exposed. Lead aprons and digital X-rays are used to ensure safety and minimize the amount of radiation.
  • How can parents help prevent tooth decay?
    Parents should take their children to the dentist regularly, beginning with the eruption of the first tooth. The dentist can recommend a specific program of brushing, flossing, and other treatments. These home treatments, when added to regular dental visits and a balanced diet, will help give your child a lifetime of healthy habits.
  • What is Fluoride?
    Fluoride is a mineral that occurs naturally in all water sources, including oceans, rivers and lakes. Fluoride is also added to some community tap water, toothpastes and mouth rinses. Infants and toddlers who do not receive an adequate amount of fluoride may be at an increased risk for tooth decay since fluoride helps make tooth enamel more resistant to decay. It also helps repair weakened enamel. Bottled water may not contain fluoride; therefore, children who regularly drink bottled water or unfluoridated tap water may be missing the benefits of fluoride. If you are not sure if your tap water has fluoride, contact your local or state health department or water supplier.
  • How often should I get a new toothbrush?
    You should change to a new toothbrush as soon as the bristles are frayed or bent. Your dentist will most likely supply you with a toothbrush that is the proper size and softness to protect their gums. If you need to replace a toothbrush between dental visits, please make sure that it is the correct age-specific toothbrush. Always allow toothbrushes to dry between brushings. Change to a new toothbrush after any illness or a strep throat infection.
  • What Foods Are Best For Baby?
    According to MyPlate, a website from the Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, an agency of U.S. Department of Agriculture, a balanced diet should include: Fruits and vegetables. Combined these should be half of what your child eats every day. Grains. Make sure at least half of their grains are whole grains, such as oatmeal, whole wheat bread and brown rice. Dairy. Choose low-fat or fat-free dairy foods. Lean proteins. Make lean protein choices, such as lean beef, skinless poultry and fish. Try to vary protein choices to include eggs, beans, peas and legumes, too. Eat at least 8 oz. of seafood a week. In addition to a nutritious diet, snacking habits, bottles and pacifiers also impact your child's oral health. Here are some tips to keep your child's mouth healthy: Infants should finish their bedtime and naptime bottles before going to bed If your child uses a pacifier, provide one that is clean—don’t dip it in sugar or honey, or put it in your mouth before giving it to the child. Serve nutritious snacks and limit sweets to mealtimes.
  • When Do Baby Teeth Come In?
    A baby’s 20 primary teeth are already present in the jaws at birth and typically begin to appear when a baby is between 6 months and 1 year. Most children have a full set of 20 primary teeth by the time they are 3. Check out the to see the order in which teeth break through and at what ages you can expect specific teeth to appear. Every child is different, but usually the first teeth to come in are located in the top and bottom front of their mouth.
  • What is Baby Bottle Tooth Decay?
    Even though they are temporary, your child's baby teeth are important, and are still susceptible to cavities. Tooth decay in infants and toddlers is often referred to as Baby Bottle Tooth Decay, or Early Childhood Caries. Children need strong, healthy teeth to chew their food, speak and have a good-looking smile. Their first teeth also help make sure their adult teeth come in correctly. It’s important to start infants off with good oral care to help protect their teeth for decades to come.
  • How Should I Clean My Baby's Teeth?
    Begin cleaning your baby’s mouth during the first few days after birth by wiping the gums with a clean, moist gauze pad or washcloth. As soon as teeth appear, decay can occur. A baby’s front four teeth usually push through the gums at about 6 months of age, although some children don’t have their first tooth until 12 or 14 months. Until you’re comfortable that your child can brush on his or her own, continue to brush your child's teeth twice a day with a child-size toothbrush and a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. When your child has two teeth that touch, you should begin cleaning between their teeth daily. For children younger than 3 years, caregivers should begin brushing children’s teeth as soon as they begin to come into the mouth by using fluoride toothpaste in an amount no more than a smear or the size of a grain of rice. Brush teeth thoroughly twice per day (morning and night) or as directed by a dentist or physician. Supervise children’s brushing to ensure that they use the appropriate amount of toothpaste. For children 3 to 6 years of age, use a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. Brush teeth thoroughly twice per day (morning and night) or as directed by a dentist or physician. Supervise children’s brushing and remind them not to swallow the toothpaste.
  • Is My Baby Teething?
    Teething is one of the first rituals of life. Although newborns usually have no visible teeth, most baby teeth begin to appear generally about six months after birth. During the first few years of your child’s life, all 20 baby teeth will push through the gums and most children will have their full set of these teeth in place by age 3. A baby’s front four teeth usually erupt or push through the gums at about six months of age, although some children don’t have their first tooth until 12 or 14 months. As their teeth erupt, some babies may become fussy, sleepless and irritable, lose their appetite or drool more than usual. Diarrhea, rashes and a fever are not normal symptoms for a teething baby. If your infant has a fever or diarrhea while teething or continues to be cranky and uncomfortable, call your physician.
  • Are Pacifiers Good for Teeth?
    Infants and young children may suck on thumbs, other fingers or pacifiers. Pacifiers dipped in sugar, honey, juice or sweetened drinks, can lead to tooth decay. Tooth decay can also begin when cavity-causing bacteria pass from saliva in a mother or caregiver’s mouth to the baby. When the mother or caregiver puts the baby’s feeding spoon in her mouth, or cleans a pacifier in her mouth, the bacteria can be passed to the baby.
  • What should I do if my child falls and knocks out a permanent tooth?
    The most important thing to do is to remain calm. Then find the tooth. Hold it by the crown rather than the root and try to reinsert it in the socket. If that is not possible, put the tooth in a glass of milk and take your child and the glass of milk with the tooth immediately to the dentist.
  • Can my teenager use whitening products for his/her teeth?
    Everybody loves a bright, white smile, and there are a variety of products and procedures available to help improve the look of your teenager’s smile. Many people are satisfied with the sparkle they get from daily brushing and regular cleanings at your dentist’s office, but if your teenager decides they would like to go beyond this to make their smile look brighter, we recommend that you speak with your dentist first to help them choose a product that will minimize sensitivity and maximize the brightness. There are many products on the market today, we want to help your teenager make sure they are using a product that protects their smile while brightening it.
  • Is grinding harmful to my child's teeth?
    Teeth grinding (bruxism) can be caused not just by stress and anxiety but by sleep disorders, an abnormal bite or teeth that are missing or crooked. The symptoms of teeth grinding include: dull headaches, jaw soreness, teeth that are painful or loose, and/or fractured teeth. If you’re concerned about your child’s teeth grinding, ask your dentist about the potential causes and, when necessary, possible solutions.
  • My child's gums bleed when they brush and floss them?
    We recommend brushing softly and flossing more. Hormonal changes are sometime responsible for red and swollen gums. Interproximal decay (in between the teeth) may also be a cause of inflamed or sore gums, so flossing is especially important.
  • When will my child get his/her wisdom teeth?
    Wisdom teeth actually begin forming before the age of 10, and if they erupt it is between the age of 17 years to 21 years. Not everyone will get wisdom teeth. An x-ray by the Dentist will reveal when and if they need to be removed.
  • I need to talk to someone regarding my child's surgery?
    Please call any of our offices between the hours of 7:30a-4:30p and ask to speak with a surgery coordinator. (605) 341-3068
  • Will someone call me soon regarding my child's surgery?
    A surgery scheduler will NOT place your child on the schedule until they have all the paperwork they are required to have by law. If your child was not scheduled the day of their appointment, please make sure that we are not waiting on paper work to schedule the surgery. When paperwork is completed, you may expect a call from a scheduler within 2 weeks. If you have not received a call please feel free to call any of our offices and ask for a surgery scheduler. (605) 341-3068
  • Why is my child not able to get into surgery sooner?
    Every child is placed on the schedule in the order in which their completed paperwork is received. Many things factor into the location in which your child get's placed including: health history, severity of case, age, weight, insurance, doctor preference and where the patient resides. If your child is scheduled at a surgery location that only allows a few patients a month, the wait will be substantially longer than a location that we frequent more regularly. It is always best to let the scheduler know if you would like the next available appointment and that you are available to be placed on our sooner list.
  • When and why does my child need to have a physical?
    Prior to any patient going under general anesthesia they will be asked to present a Health and Physical form at the time of surgery. This form will need to be dated no earlier than 29 days prior to surgery. Everyone wants to make sure your child is healthy and has no other medical issues that would cause any complications during their procedure.
  • Why can't my child eat or drink anything before surgery?
    Food or liquid in the stomach is very dangerous when a person is put under general anesthesia. When the patient receives general anesthesia, he/she could vomit the food/liquid still in the stomach and this could enter the lungs. This is called aspiration which is a life threatening condition.
  • What does General Anesthesia mean?
    To keep your child safe and comfortable during a dental procedure, your child’s dentist might decide to use general anesthesia in a surgical setting. General anesthesia makes your child’s whole body go to sleep. It is needed for certain dental procedures and treatments so that his or her reflexes will be completely relaxed. Your child will feel no pain during the procedure, nor have any memory of it.
  • Should my child brush his/her teeth in the morning before surgery?
    No, for their safety we don’t want any risk of your child swallowing water.
  • Will someone let me know what time to be at surgery?
    Yes they will call to confirm the time, location and answer any questions you may have the day before your scheduled appointment. If no one has called you or you have any questions please call (605) 341-3068 and ask for a surgery coordinator.
  • What do we do the night before surgery?
    Make sure your child has a great dinner the night before. It is really important that your child not eat or drink anything after midnight or in the morning of surgery. Remove any nail polish from your child. It is recommended that they bathe the night before surgery.
  • How do we dress for surgery?
    Dress in comfortable loose fitting clothing, short sleeves are preferred. We suggest pajamas or sweats, no one piece pajamas. Feel free to bring a favorite toy or blanket and an extra set of clothes, in case of an accident.
  • What to expect when you arrive at the surgery center:
    You will be greeted by a staff member and the admission process will be completed. You will meet with the nurse, and then your child will be escorted to the area the surgery will be performed. Because your child will be put to sleep using anesthesia a parent or guardian must remain inside the surgery center for the duration of the appointment. Be prepared to be at the surgery center up to half a day.
  • After surgery?
    When the surgery is complete your child will be moved to the recovery area. Once your child is awake, the nurse will invite you back to sit with your child. A nurse will monitor your child's recovery. When your child meets the discharge criteria, the nurse will complete the check- out process and give you instructions and information of what to expect that evening. We recommend having Tylenol and/or Ibuprofen on hand to help with discomfort throughout the evening.
  • Follow-Up appointment
    A follow-up appointment may be scheduled for your child before you leave surgery. This appointment will scheduled with the clinic you have your regular visits.
bottom of page