Parents Questions Answered!

Baby to Grad

One of the most important lessons you can teach your child is good oral health. The mouth plays a huge part in overall health, especially since poor dental care can lead to diabetes and even heart problems down the road. But you can’t protect your child’s oral health by yourself. You need partners that share your focus of providing the best for your child. When it comes to oral health, Pediatric Dental Specialists (PDS) is that partner. From birth to graduation, PDS will be there for you and your child.

Baby's First Dental Appointment

The stress of a child’s first anything can be nerve wracking, but a dental appointment can be doubly so. If you partner with PDS, the first appointment and every one thereafter will be a great experience. PDS is focused on ensuring that your child grows up with a beautiful, healthy smile. Part of the process of ensuring that is to make each visit an enjoyable one. We adapt our processes for each child in order to make them feel comfortable and safe. This can involve allowing you to sit in during the appointment or even providing light sedation with your consent. PDS will happily work to accommodate any special needs a child may have.

Braces, Retainers, Mouth guards.

At some point in your child’s development, the question of orthodontics will come up, and PDS will be there to help you navigate the process. Starting at age six, we begin to consider whether orthodontic X-rays are required. PDS provides tools and tips on how to manage both the space in your child’s mouth and the timing of when each of your child’s teeth will come in. This process maximizes the possibility of a healthy smile while minimizing the likelihood of braces or other orthodontics. If orthodontic treatment does become necessary your child can receive advanced care right here in the same facility with the same team you’ve come to know and trust.

State-of-the-art Dental Technology

One challenge that all parents face is navigating the constantly evolving world of dental technology and techniques. It’s difficult to keep up with these new developments, much less know if these options are right for your child. This is why PDS is such an invaluable partner for the oral health of your child. PDS has all of the latest dental technology and is familiar with the latest techniques, and will gladly walk you through all the options when making oral health choices for your child.

Navigating the challenges of raising a child can be tough. Let PDS be your partner and help you easily address all of your child’s oral health needs.

At what age should dental visits begin?

“First visit by first birthday” sums it up best. In order to begin a thorough prevention program, the American Dental Association and American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends your child visit a pediatric dentist when the first tooth comes in, usually between six and twelve months of age. Children with healthy teeth are better able to eat, to grow, to speak more clearly, and to smile with confidence.
How can parents make the initial dental appointment easier for the child?
Work with a team who enjoys children and are well prepared to guide young or apprehensive children through their initial office visit. Be natural and easygoing when you tell your child about their initial appointment. Stay positive to help ensure your child views their dental visits as a positive opportunity to stay healthy! Encourage your child to have a good attitude toward dental care. You should try to avoid using potentially negative words such as “drill”, “hurt”, and “needle”. Explain to your child that dental visits are a part of growing up and keeping their teeth bright and healthy. Take the time to help your child develop good dental habits, such as proper brushing, regular dental visits, routine flossing, and a good diet. describing what their initial visit will be like. You may also want to schedule your child’s appointment early in the day ensuring your child is well rested.

What is a Pediatric Dentist?

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.

First Visit

At your child’s first appointment, we will examine their teeth and gums, do a professional cleaning, take any necessary radiographs (x-rays), if age appropriate, and teach you how to remove plaque from your child’s teeth and gums. Take advantage of the opportunity to discuss the best ways to help your child develop good dental habits. Benefit from your child learning the importance of a healthy smile early in life, so they can enjoy healthy teeth and gums as adults.

Should parents stay with their child through the dental visit?

Most children are able to handle dental treatment independently. Feel confident that our highly skilled team will help you and your child determine whether your presence is needed.
If a child is not able to be treated independently, our doctors will determine the best way to help him/her throughout the treatment phase. We will find the best way to help your child through their dental treatment and may recommend nitrous oxide (laughing gas), sedation, or, if needed, performing the procedure in a hospital operating room while the child sleeps. Feel comfortable discussing any special needs or requests you may have, as we are always happy to assist you.
Behavior management for each child is determined on an individual basis; what works for one family may not work for another. Know that in all cases, our priority is to complete the treatment goals of each patient in the most safe, effective, and positive environment possible.

At what age should orthodontic treatment begin?

Your child’s orthodontic needs can be evaluated at a very young age. Understand that by diagnosing a bite problem at an early age there are more options for treatment. From birth to age six, your child’s bite is evaluated at every checkup. At age 6 to 7, when permanent teeth begin to appear, orthodontic x-rays may be suggested. During the transitional years (ages 6-12), we will routinely evaluate your child’s facial growth and bite. Often, controlling the available space as well as the sequence and timing of tooth eruption will help to give your child’s mouth a best chance for getting all the permanent teeth to align favorably. In the event more comprehensive interceptive treatment is needed, we may refer your child to an orthodontist.

How can I afford to pay for my child’s dental care?

We know you want the best care for your child. This is a helpful link that explains how insurance works .  

CareCredit™ – a flexible payment program designed for healthcare expenses including general, cosmetic, and restorative dental work. Ideal for expenses like deductibles, co-payments, and treatments not covered by insurance, CareCredit™ allows you to get the treatment your child needs, now.


“I have been taking my two sons to Dr. Meeske for years. Love her and all of the staff. I have always had a good experience. Everyone is very efficient, and you are in and out in the shortest time possible. Like having two office locations.”

Robin S.


“I always feel safe and confident bringing my kids here. I went here when u was a kid so i trust them in meeting my kids dental needs”

Jennifer M.

“We continue to have outstanding experiences each time we have an appointment with Dr M. Our son received top rate care. Everyone stops in to say hello to him when he is there- even when he is not their patient that day. The staff is knowledgable, caring and friendly. Dr M is at the top of her field! She works to make sure everyone gets the best treatments possible. We cannot recommend her and her staff highly enough!”

Clayton M.


“Some of the best people my family and I have ever met, very happy with the fact that they treat everyone like family!”


“We Love to come visit our Dentist!! My kids actually look forward to the visit and when it gets close, they count down the days! They are very proud of their nice white shiny teeth, and we thanks the staff for being so friendly and loving towards children!”

Shenna J.


“The visit there always goes good the boys really like the dentist and everybody there is always very polite and professional.”

Sandra D.


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