Thomas D. Hall, D.M.D.

Sara Rauen Dardis, D.D.S.

Pediatric Dental Specialists

early infant oral care













Perinatal & Infant Oral Health

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends that all pregnant women receive oral healthcare and counseling during pregnancy. Research has shown evidence that periodontal disease can increase the risk of preterm birth and low birth weight. Talk to your doctor or dentist about ways you can prevent periodontal disease during pregnancy.


Additionally, mothers with poor oral health may be at a greater risk of passing the bacteria which causes cavities to their young children. Mother's should follow these simple steps to decrease the risk of spreading cavity-causing bacteria:


•Visit your dentist regularly.

•Brush and floss on a daily basis to reduce bacterial plaque.

•Proper diet, with the reduction of beverages and foods high in sugar & starch.

•Use a fluoridated toothpaste recommended by the ADA and rinse every night with an alocohol-free, over-the-counter mouth rinse with .05 % sodium fluoride in order to reduce plaque levels.

•Don't share utensils, cups or food which can cause the transmission of cavity-causing bacteria to your children.

•Use of xylitol chewing gum (4 pieces per day by the mother) can decrease a child’s caries rate.



Your Child's First Dental Visit-Establishing A "Dental Home"

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Dental Association (ADA), and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) all recommend establishing a "Dental Home" for your child by one year of age. Children who have a dental home are more likely to receive appropriate preventive and routine oral health care.


The Dental Home is intended to provide a place other than the Emergency Room for parents.


You can make the first visit to the dentist enjoyable and positive. If old enough, your child should be informed of the visit and told that the dentist and their staff will explain all procedures and answer any questions. The less to-do concerning the visit, the better.


It is best if you refrain from using words around your child that might cause unnecessary fear, such as needle, pull, drill or hurt. Pediatric dental offices make a practice of using words that convey the same message, but are pleasant and non-frightening to the child.


When Will My Baby Start Getting Teeth?

Teething, the process of baby (primary) teeth coming through the gums into the mouth, is variable among individual babies. Some babies get their teeth early and some get them late. In general, the first baby teeth to appear are usually the lower front (anterior) teeth and they usually begin erupting between the age of 6-8 months.

See "Eruption of Your Child’s Teeth" for more details.


Baby Bottle Tooth Decay (Early Childhood Caries)

Baby Bottle Tooth DecayOne serious form of decay among young children is baby bottle tooth decay. This condition is caused by frequent and long exposures of an infant’s teeth to liquids that contain sugar. Among these liquids are milk (including breast milk), formula, fruit juice and other sweetened drinks.


Putting a baby to bed for a nap or at night with a bottle other than water can cause serious and rapid tooth decay. Sweet liquid pools around the child’s teeth giving plaque bacteria an opportunity to produce acids that attack tooth enamel. If you must give the baby a bottle as a comforter at bedtime, it should contain only water. If your child won't fall asleep without the bottle and its usual beverage, gradually dilute the bottle's contents with water over a period of two to three weeks.


After each feeding, wipe the baby’s gums and teeth with a damp washcloth or gauze pad to remove plaque. The easiest way to do this is to sit down, place the child’s head in your lap or lay the child on a dressing table or the floor. Whatever position you use, be sure you can see into the child’s mouth easily.


Sippy Cups

Sippy cups should be used as a training tool from the bottle to a cup and should be discontinued by the first birthday. If your child uses a sippy cup throughout the day, fill the sippy cup with water only (except at mealtimes). By filling the sippy cup with liquids that contain sugar (including milk, fruit juice, sports drinks, etc.) and allowing a child to drink from it throughout the day, it soaks the child’s teeth in cavity causing beverages.

meet our doctors

Thomas D. Hall, D.M.D.

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about Dr. Hall

Sara Rauen Dardis, D.D.S.

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about Dr. Sara


We love what we do.


Treating children with kindness and compassion while promoting a lifetime of healthy dental habits is our mission.


From the time your child grows their first tooth until they are ready to move on to an adult dentist, our doctors  and their team will help care for and protect your child’s smile. Because children are so different from adults, we take a unique approach to every patient. We treat our patients as if they were our own and we want each visit to be a fun, educational visit.

We make visits fun, easy and memorable.


Our office was built with your child in mind.

We can’t wait to see you at your next visit!

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This includes proper brushing, flossing and eating habits, ideal fluoride levels and the use of pit and fissure sealants. We strive to provide a fun, educational environment where children learn about the importance of good dental hygiene.



This includes children’s sealants, fillings, and crowns including treatment of devastating early childhood caries. We are committed to discussing all options before these procedures and answering all questions you may have. Always working for the goal of a healthy smile is our first priority.



 We understand that the need for urgent dental care is sometimes necessary.

We strive to handle dental emergencies promptly and with compassion. We are always on call and you can reach our practice any day, at any time.

Seeing your child’s smile is the best part of our day.


Our friendly team is available to answer any questions about your next visit.

Ways to reach our office...

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We treat your child as if they were our own.

Schedule your child's next visit. We can't wait to see you.

Thomas D. Hall, D.M.D.

Sara Rauen Dardis, D.D.S.

Pediatric Dental Specialists