In the Media

Q & A with Pediatric Dentists

Local dentists weigh in on the issues affecting your child’s dental health

What should you do if a child knocks out a tooth?

Find the tooth! In many cases a permanent tooth that is knocked out (avulsed) can be replanted back in the same space. In many cases where parents think a tooth has been knocked out, it was actually pushed up or intruded into gums. Ideally, gently rinse the debris off the tooth and try to put the tooth back in the space. Have your child gently bite down on a cloth to help it stay in place.

If that is not an option, store the tooth in some type of solution. Milk is the best alternative, however if that is not available, saliva or water will also work. It is important to keep the tooth moist and tissue fibers in place, so no washing, scrubbing or drying the tooth. Call your dentist—this is a true dental emergency!

Time is of the essence and the quicker the tooth can be replanted, the greater the chances are for success in maintaining the tooth. The best chance for success is if the tooth is replanted within 60 minutes.

If the knocked-out tooth is a primary tooth DO NOT try to put the tooth back into the space. Call your dentist and take the tooth to the appointment. The actual tooth gives us good information about the injury. It can tell us if the entire tooth came out or if some of the root is still in the space. If bone fragments are attached to the tooth, there may be more fractured bone around the adjacent teeth. The permanent teeth are growing and developing right above the roots of the baby teeth. So trying to put the tooth back in the space can damage or move the permanent tooth bud. A “kiddy denture”, like the ones seen in child pageants on television, can be safely worn until the permanent tooth comes in.

Submitted by Dr. Jennifer Satterfield-Siegel of Special Smiles Pediatric Dentistry

Overcoming Children’s Fear of the Dentist

written by Brooke Reynolds

Dr. Jennifer Satterfield-Siegel, owner of Special Smiles, said she uses the “tell, show and do” technique to demonstrate and talk about the procedure and then perform it on the child. She uses playful names for her dental instruments and uses counting techniques to count down how long she’ll be using each tool. “I stop and put myself in the child’s position and think, what would put me at ease in this situation?” she said.

Published in

The Art of Caring

Jennifer Satterfield-Siegel knows that God works in mysterious ways. She’s learned to accept his timing and be OK with it.

This pediatric dentist believes that everyone is a work in progress and that everyone has a natural creative spirit.

“Creating is therapeutic, and it is something we are all born to do,” she explains. “You just have to figure out what it is that you are here to create.

“There is something wonderful when you take what nature and God have given you and turn it into something else –– to do that by yourself –– and then pass that gift onto someone else to enjoy it in the form you helped create,” she says.

These gifts aren’t always tangible –– sometimes they can be gifts of encouragement. Satterfield-Siegel first witnessed this when babysitting for a dental surgeon while still in high school.

“One of this dentist’s little girls fell and knocked out a tooth,” she says. “She got a little kiddie denture, and that was pretty intriguing to me.

“In my high school mind, it was cool how this oral surgeon could take care of his family.”

Satterfield-Siegel has parlayed that experience into owning her own dental practice, Special Smiles Pediatric Dentistry, which she leads with excitement, understanding and compassion for her patients’ needs.

A spark ignites
Her North Central High School yearbook reflects just how cool that early baby-sitting experience was to her –– it records an early desire to be an orthopediatric dentist.

Her mom, Kathleen Johnson, also influenced her career focus by telling her, “Be able to take care of yourself. Don’t depend on someone else to provide your basic necessities.”

These messages hit home. While in high school, this focused young lady was already juggling many school activities that helped her set high personal standards and develop a stoic work ethic.

She played clarinet and bass clarinet in the band, participated as a pom-pom girl in marching band, was vice president of the student council her sophomore and junior years, and served as vice president of the Black Student Union.

Read the full article at