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The joy of being a pediatric dentist in Apopka


Today, I was blessed with the privilege of speaking to children of all grades and ages in Apopka about the importance of dental health and what to expect at the dentist office.

...I walk in and the sound of their voices and laughter fills the air. The feeling of excitement is electrifying and I stop a moment in awe to take this all in.

This particular visit to Central Florida Prep in Apopka, however, was extra special because the children left me amazed at these thought-provoking questions:

“How are wisdom teeth made?”

“What really causes a cavity to form?”

“What makes people lose their teeth and how do teeth become wiggly?”

These are questions from kindergarteners!

The depth of thought and their questions left my jaw hanging. To be honest, I didn't even know the answers to these kind of questions until I went through dental school! These kids really made me think, especially in figuring out how I was going to answer in a way that these bright-eyed students would understand. It really made me see things from a new perspective.

I love that about kids.

I responded to the first question:

“Well, wisdom teeth grow from cells inside of the bone in your mouth when you are older. Then, they usually don’t grow through the gums until about 16 or 17 years of age.”

Then I explained to the other student:

“Cavities form when sugar is left on our teeth. The bacteria that lives in the mouth eats this sugar, and after they eat it, they make an acid that can cause holes in the teeth.”

Finally, I took on the question about the wiggly tooth:

“When a grown-up tooth is ready to come out, it eats away at the root of the baby tooth until there is no more root left. This is what makes the baby tooth wiggly because there is nothing holding it into the bone and gums anymore. Then it falls out."

The children simply nodded and said "okay"... but I saw smiles cross their faces!

It is for reasons like this that I love visiting with students and sharing some of my dental knowledge. Of course I discuss the importance of brushing twice a day, seeing the dentist twice a year, and eating healthy fruits and vegetables. But this time,  I got to explain dental facts that are truly fascinating, even for kindergarteners, and seeing their enthusiasm and interest made me thankful all over again that I'm a pediatric dentist in this community!

Baptiste Orthodontics and Dentistry for Kids, Dr. Andre Baptiste, Dr. Alma Correia, Dental Health Month, Central Florida Prep, Education


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