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Your First Dental Exploration

At Smile Explorers Pediatric Dentistry, we follow the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Academy of Pediatrics regarding a child’s first visit to the dentist: This should be scheduled when their first tooth appears or before their first birthday. Studies have shown that starting early with regular dental check-ups will give your child the advantage of identifying dental issues that may arise as your child grows. And establishing a daily cleaning routine early is critical to helping your child have strong, healthy teeth, gums, jaws and mouth.

Before Your First Visit to Smile Explorers

The Smile Explorers office in Glendale, AZ, wants all children to feel welcome and happy. But for some children it can be a little scary. Talk to your child about going to the dentist before you come.  Take care not to use words that create concern like “needles” or “hurt.” Talk to your child in an upbeat, positive, calm way as you tell them about the dentist. Especially if you have your own anxiety with dentists, the more positive you are talking to your child about it, the better the chance of the child having good feelings about going to the dentist.

At Smile Explorers Pediatric Dentistry, we try to make the entire experience as positive and comfortable as possible. We understand there may be some fear associated with the dentist, so we talk to kids using age-appropriate language and work with each child as if they were our own kids.

New Patient Exam

Welcome to the Smile Explorers Glendale, AZ, office! We’re pleased that you chose us for your child’s dental care. Our goal is to make your child feel comfortable in our office by gaining their trust and helping to alleviate their fears. Our kid-friendly pediatric dentists and staff are skilled at helping children have a positive experience in our office.

At your child’s first exam, we ask you to stay with the child in the treatment room. During this visit, we will:

  • Review your child’s dental and health information
  • Take any necessary x-rays and thoroughly examine the teeth, gums, head and neck
  • Perform a professional dental cleaning
  • Demonstrate correct brushing and oral hygiene techniques
  • Discuss proper diet and nutrition
  • Determine a treatment plan, if needed

We’re happy to answer any questions and address any concerns you may have. We want this first visit to be educational and fun for both you and your child.

Infant/toddler first-time visits

At Smile Explorers Pediatric Dentistry, we love kids! From the minute you walk into our kid-friendly office, we want your child to feel that this is a special place. Our pediatric dentists and staff are committed to making your baby’s visit a pleasant experience.

At your baby’s first appointment, we will:

  • Ask you about your child’s medical history
  • Answer any questions and address any concerns you have
  • Examine your baby’s mouth for any signs of decay or other problems
  • Demonstrate the best cleaning method for a baby or toddler mouth

Bring your baby in as soon as the first tooth appears or around their first birthday to give your baby the best start toward a healthy mouth and teeth.

For gentle, friendly, child dental care,
call Smile Explorers Pediatric Dentistry at 623.322.2277

Serving infants, toddlers, kids and teens in the Deer Valley, Glendale, Anthem, Norterra, Arrowhead Ranch and surrounding areas.
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Experts at the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommend children visit a pediatric dentist as soon as their first tooth appears, or when they turn one year old. At your child’s first visit to Smile Explorers, we look for potential problems and help your child discover we are friendly. Early dental visits help children find a trip to the dentist to be positive and anxiety-free.

You can help make sure your child’s first experience to the dentist is happy and positive by talking about the upcoming visit and using positive words. Avoid using scary words such as “drill,” “needle,” or “hurt.” Truly there is nothing a young child has to fear at early dentist visits, so there is no reason to “prepare” for something unpleasant. As a mom or dad, even if you have had some dental challenges yourself, you should stay relaxed and calm — otherwise your child can sense your fear or anxiety about the dentist. When you and your child arrive at Smile Explorers for your appointment, the pediatric dentists and staff will work to make the whole experience the best possible for everyone!

Good brushing habits should begin as soon as your child’s first tooth erupts. You should begin cleaning your child’s teeth daily at that point. When your child is old enough to understand not to swallow their toothpaste, you can put a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste on the brush and allow them to brush their teeth, while you supervise to be sure your child is doing a complete and thorough job.

Children need to brush all surfaces of the teeth using a circular motion. Show them how to first brush all outer surfaces on the upper and lower teeth. Next, they should brush all inner surfaces. Last, they should brush all chewing surfaces. As an important final touch, they should brush their tongue.

Primary teeth (baby teeth) are going to fall out eventually. So, is infant and kids dental care really that important? The answer is: Yes. Baby teeth are extremely important:

  • To help children learn to talk and pronounce words well
  • To enable children to eat efficiently and get proper nutrition
  • To give the face its normal appearance as the child grows
  • To maintain the correct spacing and location for permanent teeth developing underneath

Most children begin losing baby teeth around the age of six, and usually all have been lost by age 12. During the transition period, baby teeth and permanent teeth reside in the mouth at the same time. It makes sense for the new permanent teeth to be in the company of healthy primary teeth to assure continuing good dental health.

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, pregnant women are recommended to adhere to oral healthcare standards during pregnancy, as periodontal disease can actually impact your baby, increasing the risk of preterm birth and low birth weight.

Parents who do not have good dental habits can actually pass on the bacteria that causes cavities to their younger children through sharing food, cups, and utensils. Additionally, children are mimicry learners – they learn behaviors from what they see and hear. Both mom and dad should visit their dentist twice yearly, brush and floss daily, and use fluoride toothpaste and mouth rinse to reduce plaque.

To reschedule an appointment, please call our office at least 24 hours in advance of the date and time. At Smile Explorers, we try to accommodate schedule changes and help you find a date that fits your schedule.

You can begin daily flossing when your child has two teeth that touch. At first, you should gently floss your child’s teeth until the child can handle it alone. It really should be a soft and gentle process without force or pressure applied. The main goals are to develop the familiarity and the good habits.

Smile Explorers’ pediatric dentists can help you determine if your child is ready to begin brushing or flossing without supervision, and can help guide your child into great dental hygiene habits.

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends pregnant women continue with good oral healthcare standards during pregnancy. A mom’s periodontal disease, known commonly as “gum disease,” can actually impact the unborn baby, increasing the risk of premature birth and low birth weight.

Parents who have less healthy dental habits can actually pass cavity-causing bacteria to their younger children by sharing food, cups and utensils. And don’t forget: Children learn by seeing and hearing what other people do. Moms and dads who visit their dentist twice yearly, brush and floss daily, and use fluoride toothpaste and mouth rinse to reduce plaque, are parents who are setting examples kids are more likely to accept and copy.

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We Are In-Network
With Your Insurance!

  • Aetna DMO and Aetna PPO
  • Assurant PPO and HMP
  • Ameritas
  • Assurant PPO and HMO
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona
  • Care First (AHCCCS)
  • Cigna PPO & DMO
  • Connection Dental
  • Delta PPO and Premier
  • Dental Health Alliance (DHA)
  • Dentemax
  • EDS
  • Guardian
  • Humana
  • HealthNet (ACCESS)
  • HealthNet
  • Maricopa (AHCCCS)
  • Mercy Care (AHCCCS)
  • Metlife
  • Phoenix Health Plan (AHCCCS)
  • Principal
  • SecureCare Dental
  • TDA
  • United Concordia
  • United Healthcare

If you have insurance through one of our approved providers, only your estimated portion of the fees will be required at the time of service. Please contact our office if you have any questions regarding insurance or billing and we will be happy to help you.

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Emergency Situations and Appointments

Smile Explorers take emergencies seriously. If you or your child has a dental emergency, such as a dislodged or chipped tooth, call us immediately and we’ll do whatever we can to help. In the case where a tooth is danger of being lost, acting quickly is crucial. As soon as we can, one of our experienced pediatric dentists will see your child and provide the critical care needed.


If your child has a toothache, it might be caused by impacted food. Clean the area around the painful tooth, and then have your child thoroughly rinse the mouth with warm water. See if dental floss can gently dislodge any food possibly caught between teeth. If your child continues to feel pain, do not use any topical treatments and do not apply a heat compress to your child’s tooth. It’s time to call Smile Explorers. If your child has a toothache and swelling in the cheek or jaw area, then apply a cold compress and contact Smile Explorers immediately for evaluation.

Chipped, Fractured, or Knocked Out Baby Tooth

If your child’s baby tooth gets chipped or is even knocked out completely, the situation is likely not an emergency. Contact Smile Explorers soon, however, to minimize any risks or problems, and to determine if the missing tooth needs to be replaced with a spacer.

Chipped or Fractured Permanent Tooth

When a child experiences a chipped or fractured permanent tooth, it is important to contact Smile Explorers immediately. If the child is brought to our pediatric dentists very soon after the incident, it may be possible to save the tooth. Delays in bring the child to the dental office can increase the risk of infection and the possibility of needing much more dental work in the future. Don’t delay in going to the dental office – but if you can quickly find pieces of the tooth, bring them to our office.

Knocked Out Permanent Tooth

If your child has a permanent tooth knocked out, try to quickly find the tooth. If you find the tooth, do not touch the root of the tooth – handle it only at the crown. Don’t try to clean it with soap, and don’t hold it too long. If the tooth has been broken into pieces, look for the pieces. If the tooth is whole, rinse it quickly with water and try to insert it back into the socket, while instructing your child to gently hold it in place by biting down on gauze. If the tooth cannot be inserted, place the tooth in a cup of milk or your child’s saliva. Do not delay – call Smile Explorers Pediatric Dentistry and then go to our Glendale, AZ, office immediately. Quick action is the most important factor in saving the tooth.

For gentle, friendly, child dental care,
call Smile Explorers Pediatric Dentistry at 623.322.2277

Serving infants, toddlers, kids and teens in the Deer Valley, Glendale, Anthem, Norterra, Arrowhead Ranch and surrounding areas.
Fun kid wearing a pilot outfit | Smile Explorers Huge Floss stick background graphic | Smile Explorers