Patients We Treat
Our office provides dental treatment for patients from birth through their teenage years. This may include, preventative care, cavity treatment, minor oral surgery, conscious sedation dentistry and some interceptive orthodontics. We also treat many children with special needs and children with cooperation issues. Please refer to the “FIRST VISIT” tab on the home page of this website for more information.
First “Terrific Toddler” Visit
The Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that a child have a dental/oral examination by a dentist by his/her first birthday. This appointment consists of an evaluation of the young child’s mouth and teeth. In addition, cavity prevention, oral hygiene instruction and nutritional counseling will be reviewed with parents. This is to insure a child has and maintains a healthy mouth at an early age. Any questions or concerns parent’s have regarding their young child’s mouth can be answered at this appointment.
First “Cleaning” Visit and Recall Visits
At the age of three years, regular “teeth cleaning” visits are started. A child is scheduled for an examination, first set of x-rays, teeth cleaning and fluoride treatment. The child is first prepared by watching a cartoon video about going to the dentist. At this appointment, parents typically accompany their child through the treatment. However, if your child wishes to be independent, we encourage that you allow him/her to have the treatment completed with the accompaniment of Dr. Jody and the staff. If the child will not cooperate, the dental appointment can be customized to what you are comfortable with completing and what the child will allow. Dr. Jody feels that at the first cleaning visit, it is very important to establish good rapport with the child so that future visits will be more pleasant for the child. Recall visits are scheduled every six months after the first “cleaning” visit.
Many children are given nitrous oxide/oxygen, or what you may know as laughing gas or happy air, to relax them for their dental treatment. Nitrous oxide/oxygen is a blend of two gases, oxygen and nitrous oxide. Nitrous oxide/oxygen is given through a small breathing mask, which is placed over the child’s nose, allowing them to relax, but without putting them to sleep. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, recognizes this technique as a very safe, effective technique to use for treating children’s dental needs. The gas is mild, easily taken, and with normal breathing, it is quickly eliminated from the body. It is non-addictive. While inhaling nitrous oxide/oxygen, your child remains fully conscious and keeps all natural reflexes.
- Please inform us of any change to your child’s health and/or medical condition.
- Tell us about any respiratory condition that makes breathing through the nose difficult for your child (stuffy nose). It may limit the effectiveness of the nitrous oxide/oxygen.
- Let us know if your child is taking any medication on the day of the appointment. This includes prescribed, over-the-counter, or herbal medications.
Conscious Sedation is recommended for apprehensive children, very young children, and children with special needs. It is used to calm your child and to reduce the anxiety or discomfort associated with dental treatments. Your child may be quite drowsy, and may even fall asleep (light nap), but they will not become unconscious.
There are a variety of different medications, which can be used for conscious sedation. The doctor will prescribe the medication best suited for your child’s overall health and dental treatment recommendations. We will be happy to answer any questions you might have concerning the specific drugs we plan to give to your child.
Prior to your appointment:
- Please notify us of any change in your child’s health and/or medical condition. Do not bring your child for treatment with a fever, ear infection or cold. Should your child become ill, contact us to see if it is necessary to postpone the appointment.
- You must tell the doctor of any drugs that your child is currently taking (prescribed, over-the-counter, or herbal medications) and any drug reactions and/or change in medical history.
- Please dress your child in loose fitting, comfortable clothing.
- Please make sure that your child goes to the bathroom immediately prior to arriving at the office or wears a diaper if you feel an “accident” could occur during treatment.
- Your child should not have solid food for at least 6 hours prior to their sedation appointment and only clear liquids for up to 4 hours before the appointment.
- The child’s parent or legal guardian must remain at the office during the complete procedure.
- Please watch your child closely while the medication is taking effect. Hold them in your lap or keep close to you. Do not let them "run around."
- Your child will act drowsy and may become slightly excited at first.
After the sedation appointment:
- Your child will be drowsy and will need to be monitored very closely. We encourage that the child is kept awake for at least two hours past the completion of the treatment. Keep your child away from areas of potential harm.
- If your child wants to sleep, please try to keep them stimulated to discourage this. However, if you are having difficulty keeping them stimulated and they want to sleep, place them on their side with their chin up. Wake your child every hour and encourage them to have something to drink in order to prevent dehydration. At first it is best to give your child sips of clear liquids to prevent nausea. The first meal should be light and easily digestible.
- If your child vomits, help them bend over and turn their head to the side to insure that they do not inhale the vomit.
- Because we use local anesthetic to numb your child’s mouth during the procedure, your child may have the tendency to bite or chew their lips, cheeks, and/or tongue and/or rub and scratch their face after treatment. Please observe your child carefully to prevent any injury to these areas.
- Please call our office for any questions or concerns that you might have.
Deep Sedation/IV Sedation
Our office does NOT provide deep or IV sedation in which the child is completely asleep. However, we do refer to facilities that can provide this treatment option if needed or chosen.