Starting the Right Way – Your Child’s First Visit at Advanced Dental Care

curvy-slide-down-to-kids-play-landYour child’s first visit should be a fun, exciting experience, and at Advanced Dental Care we make sure your child’s time with us is positive.

The first visit is a fun experience. After checking in, head downstairs to the children’s play area. There is a slide, secret passage, pin ball machine, and a lot of fun toys. When it’s time to see your dentist, you’ll be seated in a private treatment room, which has a comfortable window seat for parents. This enables you to be a part of your child’s visit, to learn tips to motivate healthy mouths, and for your child to feel at ease that you are with them. We offer noise cancelling headphones, Netflix movies, and nitrous oxide or laughing gas if needed. If treatment is needed, we have dental lasers that enable us to remove decay without anesthetic and we recently added electric hand pieces that have much less noise and vibration. After the visit, there is a prize room complete with balloons.

child-enjoying-slide-at-advanced-dental-careKeeping your child’s teeth healthy. Baby or primary teeth are essential in the health and development of permanent teeth. Baby teeth function to help chew and aid in phonetics and speech. Tooth decay can lead to pain that leads to problems eating, sleeping, playing, and learning. These teeth also function to hold the space for the permanent teeth. When there is a hole caused by a cavity, it can cause decay on the permanent tooth that is developing under the baby tooth. Decay and infection in baby teeth can lead to serious health complications and can be life threatening.

Why visit every six months? Early detection of problems is key. It is much easier, comfortable, and cost effective to fix a little pin point than to fix a cavernous hole.The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Dental Association recommend the first dental visit by age 1. There are a lot of things that you can learn and that we can find at your child’s first visit.
The first tooth usually erupts between 6-12 months. When you see the little tooth coming through, you should start brushing or wiping it off at least 2 times per day. Even when my kids would finish their last drink of milk and fall asleep, I would take a clean cloth and wipe off their teeth. Not only does this wipe the sugar from the milk off, but it also gets your baby used to you cleaning his or her teeth.

Our objective is to create healthy mouths in a positive, comfortable setting. We have numerous tips that can foster positive dental experiences not only while you are here at the office, but also when you are motivating your child at home.

Check out the difference that six months made in this tooth:

6-month-difference copy

Before three is free for the first consultation so call today and let us help your child keep smiling!


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What do you get when you support local?

Supporting our community and patients is a big deal here at Advanced Dental Care. That is why we donate to local charities, give to benefits, and support people around the area when they ask for donations. As a small business, we try to use other businesses here in the area too. For our Christmas party this year, our theme is supporting local business. The response of our local businesses has been larger than the ever expected. The experiences for us even better than the items purchased.

When you drive around town have you ever noticed businesses on trash cans, in sports programs, or in your child’s yearbook? Have you noticed the businesses that you routinely see with baskets at benefits that support your friends or family? After serving on Children’s Advocacy Network fundraising committee and going to many of the school fundraisers, it amazes me how much our local businesses give back in donations. The money that you spend at those businesses goes right back into our community. The next time you are out, try taking note of who you see giving back. I am sure that those people would sincerely appreciate you patronizing them so that they are able to continue giving back.

There is something heart-warming about seeing familiar faces when you are out and about. At Advanced Dental Care Jill has been here for 32 years, Lisa for 26, Diane for 20, Debbie for 17, Candy for 13, Janet for 12, and Lori for 11 years! It is good to know that these people will not only be taking care of you today, but will be around to support you for years to come. That relationship becomes one of friends and family and is priceless to replace.

A big part of the holidays is the experience that you had. There are a lot of really kind, dedicated people right here in our community that are happy to help you. We challenge you this holiday season to try shopping local. It’s amazing the gift you will give yourself!


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Frenectomy Procedure

Try to swallow without letting the back of your tongue touch the roof of your mouth. Now try talking while holding the tip of your tongue to the back side of your lower teeth. Both are pretty tough to do well, but that is how babies that have extra skin tying down their tongue or lip can feel.

As a mom and dentist, I understand the desperation in wanting a happy, healthy baby. Ankyloglossia or tongue-tie is something that approximately 5% of babies may have, but can be overlooked. It can cause difficulty when your baby tries to nurse. The infant cannot latch adequately, so feeding is difficult and you may notice a blister on the top lip of the infant. The infant may swallow a lot of air and become reluctant to nurse or frequently spit up. For mothers, irritation and pain are not uncommon. That toe curling sensation at latch should not last forever!

The upper lip is another common place that needs evaluated. If tongue and lip ties are left untreated, children may have difficulty eating, crowded teeth, a space between the upper front teeth, and a narrow palate which complicates breathing, speech problems, and snore.

The condition is easily treated with a procedure called a frenectomy. Advanced Dental Care treats both children and infants. By using a soft tissue laser, we are able to relieve the extra skin comfortably with no sedation and using only topical gel. The procedure takes about 10 minutes and the results are immediate. I have seen the positive impact that it has had for families and it is truly amazing. After treating her infant son, one patient told me, ‘It was the best thing that we ever did!’

There is no reason to put off treatment. The sooner that the restriction is revised, the sooner that the infant can swallow, and it is more comfortable for all.

Here is a checklist of symptoms (taken from Dr Bobby Ghaheri, MD):

 Baby’s Symptoms

  • Poor latch
  • Falls asleep while attempting to nurse
  • Slides off the nipple when attemping to latch
  • Colic symptoms
  • Reflux symptoms
  • Poor weight gain
  • Gumming or chewing of your nipple when nursing
  • Unable to hold a pacifier in his or her mouth
  • Short sleep episodes requiring feeding every 2-3 hours

Mother’s Symptoms

  • Creased, flattened or blanched nipples after nursing
  • Cracked, bruised or blistered nipples
  • Bleeding nipples
  • Severe pain when your infant attempts to latch
  • Poor or incomplete breast drainage
  • Infected nipples or breasts
  • Plugged ducts
  • Mastitis or nipple thrush



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Complimentary Orthodontic Consultations – June 13th during Kid’s Day

Straight teeth are not only beautiful, but they can make you feel better. That is because aligned teeth hit more evenly, are easier to keep clean, and help the joints function better. There are also different avenues to achieve straight teeth depending on age and desired esthetics.

Appliance Therapy

Young people from approximately 6-12 can benefit from appliance therapy. These appliances can create space and make the bones that surround the teeth more ideal. By creating space and correcting cross bites when permanent teeth have not all come in, they can erupt into a more ideal location. Most of these appliances can be cemented in or removable depending on the patient and parent’s preference. They can also have cool colors, designs, or there are glow in the dark options. The goal of this phase of orthodontics is to decrease or sometimes even eliminate the need for braces.





...and her rockin' appliance

…and her rockin’ appliance


Braces are used to guide the teeth into ideal locations. Because brackets are wires are hard to clean around, it is very important to have both excellent home care and routine visits. I like to have cleaning appointments coincide with orthodontic visits so that we can really get all surfaces clean. Just like with appliances, cool colors can make this a fun experience.

White spots and decay can be an issue with braces, but Allie does an excellent job keeping her braces clean and teeth healthy!

White spots and decay can be an issue with braces, but Allie does an excellent job keeping her braces clean and teeth healthy!


Invisalign is an excellent option if esthetics are of concern while straightening. The trays are clear and easy to wear. Patients are able to remove the trays to eat and brush which helps keep teeth healthier. With this option, patients are able to see a digital before and after of their alignment.

Brooke finished Invisalign, graduated from Mizzou, and is ready to start her new career with a stunning smile

Brooke finished Invisalign, graduated from Mizzou, and is ready to start her new career with a stunning smile

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What to do when they won’t brush!

Try these three simple tips to help your kids brush better and have happier, healthier smiles.

1.       Make it fun- I am no Carrie Underwood, but until my kids figure that out, they get to hear my lovely off pitch tunes. These little jingles make all of us giggle and the two minutes of brushing goes by much quicker. Even phrases like ‘We get to brush your teeth now!’ vs. ‘We have to brush your teeth!’ can make for a more positive experience. For older kids, try the Agent Blue Mouthwash. Have your child brush, then use the mouth wash and if there are no places that are blue, try a reward…which brings me to my next piece of advice…

2.       Bribery- Call it positive reinforcement or bribery, either way, it seems to work. At my house it is an extra book at bedtime. Some kids are better enticed by a later bedtime, stickers, or video game time. Try to avoid candy, it somewhat defeats the purpose of brushing J

3.       Start early and make it part of your routine. As much as my kids try to procrastinate their bed time with one last drink or any crazy excuse, we really try to stick to the routine. My daughter is great about starting to brush, my son is another story. I totally understand the struggle of trying to motivate the seemingly unwilling participant. Keep fighting the good fight and it will get easier…right?!?! Trying different flavors of tooth paste, a fun tooth brush, and floss picks vs. regular floss may also help. An electric tooth brush does a great job of getting teeth clean and many have timers so brushing lasts longer than a few seconds. Even young children can hold the brush and bite on it so allow them to start holding the brush early. Don’t forget to brush all of the surfaces of the teeth when your child is done. Little ones can also be gently cradled back in your arms so that you can see back teeth better. Remember to be gentle when brushing-it’s not about brushing hard, but about getting all of the surfaces.


Letting your kids brush first gives them independence and teaches them the coordination to brush on their own.

Letting your kids brush first gives them independence and teaches them the coordination to brush on their own.

Cradling your little ones help you to see those hard to reach back teeth and makes them feel more secure.

Cradling your little ones help you to see those hard to reach back teeth and makes them feel more secure.

Hopefully this helps your daily brushing battles become a lifetime of triumphs for healthy teeth. Good luck!

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Smile Story with Lacey Hauk, DMD

People often ask me, “How can I have beautiful white teeth?” A dazzling smile will get you noticed and you’ll feel more confident as you face your day!


smile 1  First, it is important to limit foods and beverages that can cause staining, like coffee, tea, or wine.  Switch to using a straw for drinking soda and stay away from food or drinks that would stain a white napkin. 

If you have been thinking of professional whitening there are easy, comfortable options. 

1. Zoom2 Whitening: This is what you see in a lot of the reality tv shows because of the fantastic, immediate result in just over an hour. Zoom2 Whitening is simple and painless.  After treatment we will  give you complimentary take home trays and whitening gel so you can easily do touch ups months down the road.

 2. Take home whitening is another great option: Custom trays will be made  to individually fit each of your teeth. Take home whitening will take you about 3-5 minutes per day for two weeks or until you get to the shade you want. You will be given extra tubes of bleach to touch up when wanted.

smile 2

  3. Crest White Strips are commonly used, but I am not a fan of these for a few reasons. The first is that the strips do not custom fit your teeth and they come in a generic strip like a piece of tape. When the bleach gets on the gums, it can cause a chemical burn. The teeth may become white, but the gums will be fire engine red…not pretty. The second problem I have is sensitivity. I have seen emergency patients due to extreme cold sensitivity and gum pain. Both can be avoided. 

smile 3

 Bleaching should be a good experience with a beautiful result. Call us and let us know how we can help you smile brighter!


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