Here at Viera Pediatric Dentistry, our compassionate patient-focused care puts children’s oral health first with a strong foundation in preventative care. Our goal is to create positive experiences at the dentists’ office that will translate to a lifetime of excellent oral health.
Dental fear is something that we take seriously and our goal is for our patients to graduate from our office empowered, educated, cavity free, and looking forward to their next visit.
Our gentle approach allows us to focus on your child’s emotions, their thoughts, and their past experiences to ensure a positive appointment. We work hard to establish trust with our families to create a positive and honest relationship. We do not force children to have treatment completed and work to build that relationship over time to allow for a positive experience.
Sometimes it takes multiple visits to build that trust with children, especially those with special needs. Collaborative care amongst pediatricians, occupational therapists, speech therapists, etc. is encouraged to ensure that there is a dedicated team working towards bettering a child’s overall health and confidence. Dr. Patel and her staff work with each family individually to build those relationships and create happy positive experiences that have kids looking forward to coming back again.
Dr. Patel has a reputation of being a conservative dentist who always puts the needs of her patients first. Each child is unique, and each child deserves a thoughtful approach to what is best for them. All cavities do not need to be filled, and x-rays do not need to be taken every year for every child. We treat the whole child rather than focusing only on the teeth.
Taking the same approach to every child assumes that every child’s life experience is the same – that they enjoy the same foods, have the same medical history, have the same oral bacteria, have the same genetics, drink the same amount of juice, eat the same type of snacks, eat the same amount of candy and are equally susceptible to getting cavities – which is simply untrue!
We as dentists have the opportunity and responsibility to prescribe treatment and x-rays in a way that utilizes our education, experience, and our patient’s individual circumstances (age, which teeth are present, dental history, oral hygiene, food/beverage habits, etc). There are many cavities that, although present, do not need to be treated. Dr. Patel takes many things into consideration before recommending treatment. Through her experience, she has learned that while some treatment is inevitable, there are many opportunities to take a more conservative approach.
We are a small practice and don’t overschedule. Your appointment time is reserved just for you and your child. You will always have the opportunity to speak with Dr. Patel during your child’s dental appointments – whether they are for first visits, check-ups, or treatment appointments. If you arrive late to your appointment you may be asked to reschedule as we run on time and do not want to take away from another patient’s scheduled visit.
Dr. Patel firmly believes that parents need to take an active role in the oral health care of their children. For this reason she prefers parents to be present for their child’s dental visit to ensure that as members of the VPD family, the parents and children feel comfortable asking questions about their health. This builds confidence and makes families responsible for the status of their oral health and what can be done to improve it as a team.
Dr. Patel follows the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry guidelines and encourages parents to bring their children in within 6 months of their first tooth erupting/by their 1st birthday and then every six months. A child’s first non-emergency visit under age 3 is complimentary and meant to review all the preventive measures that can be taken to avoid cavities and trauma in the first place.
We discuss topics like diet, hygiene, breastfeeding, toothpaste, discuss thumbsucking/pacifier use and habits, what to do in case of an emergency and how to remain cavity free and answer any questions you may have! These “under 3” visits lay a strong foundation for future positive experiences. It allows your child to become familiar with the staff, the sounds, and the dentistry itself! We schedule these between 11:30 and 12:30 PM and encourage parents to bring a list of questions you may have to ensure you get the most out of your visit.