Wesley just celebrated his first birthday - and WE celebrated his first visit to our practice!
You may ask, "What can you do with a one year old at a dental visit?" Our answer: "LOTS!"
The entire Kuttler Dental Team is committed to helping you with the healthy habits to prevent dental problems - and what better time to begin than at the very start?
Before a child is even born, we are discussing preventive care with expectant parents and helping mothers care for their dental health during their pregnancy. We prepare our families with what to expect and what to be doing in those first few months, from taking care of the baby's gums and new teeth to starting good habits and dietary choices. As any new parent will tell you - so much happens so fast in those first months! We want to help the caregivers of our future little patients know what to do and why.
By the first birthday there will be some teeth to look at, some developmental clues to future issues, and lots of homework to discuss with caregivers. At the first appointment our dentist, Bill, does a thorough examination and answers any questions about the child's history and potential issues.
One of the things that sets us apart from most dental practices is that ALL children see a registered dental hygienist for their appointments. I have been fortunate in my dental hygiene career to have practiced with exceptional pediatric dentists, been employed as a dental consultant for Head Start programs, and presented dental health education for pre-natal classes. Those learning opportunities have helped us create a unique approach to how we work behaviorally and clinically with children in our practice. So when I see a child for their first visit (and for every visit from then on), we are developing a trusting relationship that will help each child not only have a healthier mouth and bright smile, but a positive attitude about going to the dentist.
Besides the examination, oral cleaning and fluoride treatment, the first visit with us is also a 'dental play date'! At this visit and each one after, we work to familiarize each child with who we are, what we do, what they need to do, and why. We make each visit educationally age-appropriate so that we can maximize our impact on what each child takes home and carries forward until we see them at their next visit. Special notes and letters to children reinforce our times together. Our loving and interactive environment builds trust and security, as well as good dental habits.
We look forward to seeing Wesley in 6 months - and working together with his parents to create not only a very bright and positive dental future, but also helping him with a positive attitude about dentistry and good dental health for his entire life!
-- Sharon Kuttler, R.D.H.