Patient Care

Embracing the (Dreaded) Pedo Patient

By Melia Lewis, RDH, BSDH on February, 12 2020
Melia Lewis, RDH, BSDH

Melia has been a dental hygienist for 10 years and loves being part of the dental field. She's originally from Alberta, Canada, but now lives and works in Utah. When she's not practicing dental hygiene or working on her website Hygiene Edge, she loves being in the Utah Mountains or being with her 5 year old Georgia.

A few years ago, I got a call from an office to ask if I would temp for them. I was doing a lot of temping work, and somehow this office got my name from another office I had previously filled in for. It was for a day I didn’t have any scheduled, so I thought I might as well!

After confirming and getting the address of the office, I put the info in my phone to see how long the drive would be to plan my day accordingly. What popped up next was one of my worst fears – it was a pedo office! I had never worked at a pedo office before, and honestly, had never desired too.

I was dreading that temping day for weeks.

Well, the scheduled Friday came and I seriously considered calling in. However, I put on my brightest socks to lighten my mood, and headed out the door. I’m sure you’re all guessing the ending to this story.

Maybe it was because I had such low expectations for the day, or maybe because I actually like kids, the day ended up being so fun! Chatting all day to kids about hobbies, favorite TV characters and oral hygiene was a blast. Taking radiographs on kids is tricky, but they were understanding that sometimes we just do our best with little mouths. Plus, I learned a few things while there.

So, when you see that cute little 5-year-old scheduled in your chair, instead of melting down (like me), get excited! They’re usually happy or scared to be there and need someone to bounce that energy off of.

They love being cared for, having fun, and seeing that you love being there, too. They soak up education and are interested in all the interments we use. And even if they leave a bit sad or we didn’t accomplish everything, we can only do our best with these little mouths. And that’s OK!

Visit Hygiene Edge for more from Melia Lewis, RDH, BSDH.

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