Pediatric Dentistry is one of nine recognized dental specialties of the American Dental Association. A pediatric dentist is a specialist in the field of dentistry dealing particularly with the oral healthcare of children, from infancy through the teenage years. Pediatric dentists complete two to three years of additional specialized training (after the required four years of dental school) to prepare them for treating a wide variety of children’s dental problems. They are also trained and qualified to care for patients with medical, physical, or mental disabilities.
According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), your child should establish a dental home by age one, or within 6 months of the eruption of their first tooth.
Our goal at Mount Rose Pediatric Dentistry is to provide a comprehensive and comfortable dental home that exceeds your expectations. Our entire team will strive to put you and your child at ease and make the visit fun while also being thorough and informative. We will educate you and your child to make sure you have all of the tools you need to establish a lifetime of optimal oral while maintaining a positive dental experience.
All new patients and parents meet privately with Dr. Murphy prior to any dental services being provided. This meeting is crucial in determining the most appropriate dental care based on the child’s needs as well as parent’s desires and concerns. For most patients, the initial visit will consist of a comprehensive exam and dental cleaning. Other services may be recommended and Dr. Murphy will speak with you in detail about any other recommendations as well as future visits. He will be happy to answer any questions or concerns you have during this time.
First visits typically last about an hour and are scheduled throughout the day. For younger children, sometimes a morning appointment can be more appropriate when the child is well rested.
For new patients with pain or discomfort, our office will schedule a limited exam to address the immediate concern and bypass a comprehensive exam and cleaning until a later time.
Mount Rose Pediatric Dentistry has an “open door” policy with regard to parents accompanying their kids at their dental appointments. We feel that it is important for parents to take an active role in their children’s dental care and invite them to be present with their kids at all times. As all children are different, some kids respond more favorably to a new environment with their parents present while other children are more comfortable being alone. It is important that we find what works best for your children.
It is very common for young infants and young children to have some degree of anxiety during their first couple of dental appointments. Children will feed off of parent’s feelings and emotions and it is for this reason that we ask parents to always express of fun and positive attitude about their kids dental appointments. We ask parents to never use words that may evoke any sort of negative feeling about coming to the dentist. Words like:” shot”, “pinch”, “it will only hurt for a little”, or anything that may scare a child should never be used.
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), stands firm in that fluoride is a safe and effective adjunct in reducing the risk of caries (cavities) and reversing enamel demineralization (early cavities). A number of clinical trials have confirmed the anti-caries effect of professional topical fluoride treatments, including 5% neutral sodium fluoride varnish. Fluoride varnishes can prevent or reverse enamel demineralization. In children with moderate to high caries risk, fluoride varnishes and fluoride-releasing restorative and bonding materials have been shown to be beneficial and are best utilized as part of a comprehensive preventive program in the dental home. In our community, the public drinking water supply does not contain fluoride and for this reason, some patients at high risk of dental decay can benefit from a systemic fluoride supplement. Dr. Murphy will be happy to speak with you in person about any questions and concerns you may have regarding the use of fluoride.
Our office uses digital radiography (digital x-rays) which allows us to take x-rays using up to 90% less radiation than conventional film x-rays. Using this technology, we are able to take an x-ray of your mouth by using a small sensor which records the image of your teeth and sends it to a computer. The result is a highly detailed image of your mouth that can easily be enhanced to better diagnosis dental concerns and determine the very best treatment for each case. There is no definitive age that dental radiographs should be taken at. There are many factors that determine the appropriate time and age that a child should begin having a radiographic examination. Dr. Murphy would be happy to answer in detail any concerns or questions you have about x-rays for your child.
Creating an atmosphere of comfort and compassion is very important to us so we can instill positive feelings about going to the dentist without anxiety, pain or fear. Depending on the age of the child, their behavior, and the extent of any treatment diagnosed, we offer a few options to make your child’s appointment more comfortable. We provide nitrous oxide in our office. When a deeper level of sedation is needed, we offer treatment under general anesthesia in the operating room.
Nitrous oxide, also known as “laughing gas” is used to help relax children with mild to moderate dental anxiety. Nitrous oxide is delivered through a small mask placed over the child’s nose. The effects of Nitrous Oxide help children to relax so they can receive their dental treatment calmly and safely. Nitrous Oxide is recognized by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry as a safe and effective technique to use for treating children’s dental needs. The gas is non-addictive and is eliminated from the body within a few minutes after it is stopped. While inhaling nitrous oxide, your child will remain awake and able to interact with the dental team. Nitrous Oxide also provides an analgesic or pain relieving effect. For this reason, using Nitrous Oxide often allows us to complete small fillings without numbing the mouth with local anesthetic. When local anesthetic is needed, using Nitrous Oxide first will make the injection more comfortable. Dr. Murphy utilizes Nitrous Oxide and topical anesthetic gel to make injections as pain free as possible. Many children do not even realize they have had a “shot.”
General Anesthesia may be recommended for very young children, children with extensive dental needs, children who are extremely uncooperative or apprehensive, and children with special healthcare needs. For these patients, treatment under general anesthesia allows us to complete quality dental care in the safest, fastest and least traumatic manner for the child. General Anesthesia is performed only in a hospital or outpatient surgical center, not our dental office. Your child will be completely asleep and unaware of the dental treatment that is taking place, and Dr. Murphy will be able to complete all treatment in one visit. This is similar to what you would experience if your child needed general anesthesia for an outpatient medical procedure such as removal of tonsils or placement of ear tubes. Dr. Murphy is on staff and has hospital privileges at both Renown Regional Medical Center and Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center.
Dr. Murphy will be happy to answer any questions or concerns you have about sedation.