A pediatric dentist guide for protecting children’s teethInfants, in general, are more prone to different health complications because their bodies are in a constant developmental phase. In a similar manner, infants and toddlers are vulnerable to periodontal issues for multiple reasons. Tooth decay and other periodontal issues in formative years can lay the foundation for lifelong dental health complications. However, it’s possible to take care of your child’s dental health by the following the tips recommended by seasoned pediatric dentists.

Initial dental checkup by the first birthday

Majority of dental experts recommend parents to take their child for his first dental checkup no later than his first birthday. This initial dental checkup is central to implement preventive dental care in place. Having your children examined for their dental health at that point of their age will protect them from suffering and hefty dental care bills at later stages of life.

Maintain dental cleaning routine from the beginning

To protect them from any oral health issue and to indoctrinate a hard-to-break dental cleaning habit, start taking care of their oral cavity from infancy. Gentle brushing of gums with baby toothpaste can be the start of this. After the growth of the first teeth, make sure that it is being brushed by baby toothpaste twice a day. Also start their flossing routine as soon as two teeth are grown side by side. To understand the techniques of infant dental care, consult any good pediatric dentist.

Prevent baby bottle tooth decay

It is pretty common for parents to put children to sleep with a bottle in their mouth, which is usually filled with milk and other sugary liquids. The sugar and other remnants sticking to the teeth and gum can result in tooth decay. Therefore, avoid giving your child the bottle as a lullaby when he/she has grown teeth.  If the child is not able to sleep without sucking on the bottle, then only fill it with water.

Cut down their daily sugar intake

Children love to imbibe on sugary liquids. However, the detrimental effects of sugar for the oral cavity, particularly for teeth, are also pretty known. Therefore, it is important to cut down the daily sugar intake of the child. According to the recommendation of pediatric dentists, a child 2-4 years old must not consume more than four ounces of sugary fluid daily. Also, try to limit the sugary treats only for particular occasions. Excessive consumption of sugar is not just bad for oral health, but also for the overall wellbeing.

Use of pacifier should be discontinued by age three

Use of pacifier certainly has some benefits during infancy. For instance, it is believed to lower the risk of SIDS in infants. Nonetheless, the prolonged use of a pacifier can disturb the natural growth of teeth. The extended sucking on a pacifier can particularly disturb the growth of upper front teeth.

By acting upon the above-discussed tips, parents can maintain a good dental care routine of their children. To know more about pediatric oral health care, get in contact with The Gentle Dentist. Please visit our website at www.TheGentleDentist.com or call us at 586-247-3500.


Shelby Township Dentist Explains the Importance of Back to School CheckupsA new school year is approaching and parents are checking items off of their shopping list: binders, backpacks, pencils and more. When completing your back to school checklist, don’t forget to schedule a dental exam for your child. Preventative dental care can prevent missed days at school due to emergencies and toothaches.

The back to school season is often a busier time for dental offices in Shelby Township, so be sure to schedule an appointment if you have not already.

What to Expect at a Back to School Checkup

During a back to school dental check up, your dentist will perform a thorough cleaning, check for cavities, decay, discolored teeth, and examine your child’s jaw to ensure healthy growth.

If your child will be participating in any sports this year, your back to school exam is the perfect time to have a custom mouth guard fitted to prevent dental emergencies and even concussions.

Tips for a Successful Back to School Dental Exam

Ease Dental Anxiety

If your child has a fear of the dentist, try to make the experience fun and perhaps even provide a special treat such as a trip to the movie theatre or park after the dental visit. Also, ask your dentist how they can make your child feel comfortable and ease their anxiety. For example, The Gentle Dentist in Shelby Township provides special music with noise canceling headphones and many other options for dental patients of all ages.

Ask About Low Cost Plans and Financial Arrangements

If you’re on a tight budget or you do not have dental insurance, many Shelby Township dentists can provide financial arrangements and affordable dental plans.

Dr Antolak from The Gentle Dentist offers the Gentle Dental Plan which includes 2 cleanings and 2 exams with x-rays every year. The cost is $247 per year and $187 per year for children 12 and under.

Often families will put off dental exams to save money but end up paying more in the long run due to expensive treatments that could have been prevented in a routine checkup. So be sure to make you and your child’s oral health a top priority.

Make it a Family Activity

Children should not be the only ones receiving a dental checkup, so schedule cleanings and exams for the entire family. In addition to parents keeping up on their oral health, they will set an example for their children. Also, participating in the dental exam experience can make your child feel more comfortable with their own exam if they see Mom and Dad are visiting the dentist too.

Schedule a Back to School Checkup with a Shelby Township Dentist

Looking for a new dental office to call home? Dr. Antolak provides general dentistry and cosmetic dentistry for everyone in the family in a comfortable, caring environment.  Schedule your dental visit with Dr. Antolak in Shelby Township today by calling 586-247-3500 or visit our website at thegentledentist.com.


Helping your child conquer their fear of the dentistTaking your child to the dentist is important to maintain healthy teeth and start healthy oral hygiene habits. However, your child may not care about the benefits of the dentist. Instead, he or she may show fear of the dentist. With the unfamiliar sounds, objects, and a stranger working in their mouth, who can blame them? It is our mission to have children conquer any fear they may have, so they are more apt to visit the dentist as a part of their regular routine in adulthood. In this article, you will find some tips that we find beneficial in helping children conquer their fear of the dentist.

Don’t Wait Too Long

The sooner your child can visit the dentist, the better. This will allow your child to feel a sense of comfort and familiarity the more often they go. Some parents may think that children do not need to visit the dentist on a regular basis due to them having baby teeth (they’re going to fall out anyway, right?). Wrong! It is best for a child to visit a dentist whenever their first tooth breaks through.

Be Careful of Your Words

Be sure not to mention any words that may be alarming to your child. Any talk about pain, shots, etc. should be avoided at all costs. The dental staff will be able to use the correct terms, and in a way that is not scary for your child. We want their experience to be positive, happy, and more importantly, educational on why it’s essential to maintain a healthy smile.

Role Play

It may benefit your child if you play “dentist” with them. We suggest allowing them to be the dentist, giving them a toothbrush, and having them count your teeth. You can reverse roles, and pretend to use a mirror to see their teeth better, etc. Make sure you DO NOT make any alarming noises (that may mimic a drill, for example). Playing dentist on a stuffed animal may also be beneficial. The primary goal is to have them become comfortable and prepared for what they can expect when they visit the dentist.

Be Prepared for Fussing

Dentists have seen it all. Fussy kids, tantrums, you name it. Expect your child to whine, fuss, cry and wiggle. Most importantly, remember to remain calm! The dental staff and dentist are professionals and will be able to guide you and your child if need be. They may ask for you to sit with them, hold their hand, or other ways that may provide comfort to your little one.

Teach Healthy Oral Hygiene Habits

The most important factor is for your child to learn healthy dental habits. Making sure they know visiting the dentist is something that has to be done, not an option, is crucial. They need to know that having strong teeth will allow them to eat, have a beautiful smile, and prevent cavities.

If you would like any more information about bringing your child to the dentist, or conquering any dental fear, give us a call at The Gentle Dentist! We can be reached at 586-247-3500. We would love to help guide your child in creating healthy oral hygiene habits!

Macomb County Dentist Discusses Children’s Dental Health MonthFebruary is children’s dental health month and the need for early childhood care and awareness is vital for long term health. Because many of you are grandparents or primary caregivers of young children I thought it would be helpful for me to include information about children’s health issues from infants and up. This can even be passed on to the children’s parents for more awareness.

Pacifiers and Thumb Sucking

Sucking is a natural reflex for babies and serves to help them learn about their world, feel secure, calm themselves, and help them fall asleep. Most children will stop thumb sucking or using a pacifier between the ages of 2 and 4. Once permanent teeth begin to emerge, sucking on a thumb or pacifier can cause problems with growth and alignment.

Tooth-brushing for Toddlers

Parents should clean baby’s gums with gauze following all feedings. Once the first tooth has emerged, begin brushing your child’s teeth and gums with a soft-bristled toothbrush and a little water. When your child is able to hold the toothbrush and tries to brush himself, supervise carefully and then brush again to make sure every surface has been brushed. As children learn how to brush, begin using a pea-sized amount of toothpaste and teach them to spit out the toothpaste, rinsing well with water.

February is National Children’s Dental Health Month, and we want to help your children develop a happy, healthy smile!

 “Well Baby” Dental Exams

The American Dental Association recommends that the first dental visit take place within six months of the appearance of the first tooth, and no later than the child’s first birthday. Early childhood dental visits will allow your dentist to check the teeth for signs of decay and monitor progress and potential problems with emerging teeth. Your dentist can also make sure your child is receiving the proper amount of fluoride for healthy teeth. This visit will also give your child the opportunity to become comfortable with the dentist and dental visits.

Making a Successful Transition from Baby Bottle to Cup

As harmless as it may seem, allowing your child to drink from a baby bottle for too long can expose him or her to baby bottle tooth decay. From the time your child’s first teeth appear, they need to be protected from frequent and prolonged exposure to liquids such as fruit juice, milk or formula, which all contain sugar. Infants should finish their naptime or bedtime bottle before going to bed, as liquids can pool in the mouth and lead to decay when babies are allowed to fall asleep with a bottle.

During the transition into from primary teeth to the adult teeth there is a lot to be considered.  Your dentist can evaluate and detect cavities, analyze growth of the jaws to see if there may be problems with your child’s mouth.  Prevention is critical with proper nutrition being considered essential eating with a balanced diet reducing the amounts of simple carbohydrates such as soda and snacks.  These not only cause cavities, but rob the child’s body of much needed building blocks for their future.   It is important to maintain regular dental visits for the early treatment of diseases.


Dental sealants are a protective layer that prevents cavities from settling into the deep grooves of the teeth.  When properly done they can last many years and keep the child cavity free.


Early detection of growth discrepancies between the bone and the size of the teeth can be analyzed and treated at an early age. This takes advantage of the fact that when the child is growing, some growth can be directed with orthodontic appliances and braces.

Macomb County Dentist Discusses Children’s Dental Health Month

Management of your child and the development of good habits start from a young age but we have been able to transition many children who had poor health to ones who are maintained and have good checkups each 6 months they return.  Contact our Macomb County Dental office if you would like your child or grandchild evaluated.

Haiti Mission Trip Update:

I will be going to Haiti again for my 15th annual trip.  This year we are blessed to be providing dental, medical and pharmaceutical services to over 1000 Haitians.  We have 2 physicians, 1 Physician assistant, 2 nurses, 2 general dentists, 1 oral surgeon and 1 pharmacist along with many who will be supporting the medical teams.  We are from many churches including Trinity Lutheran Utica, Faith Lutheran in Troy, Shepherd’s Gate in Shelby Twp.  The message of Jesus Christ and the hope of Salvation will be the core focus while we provide these highly needed medical services.  We would appreciate your faithful prayers. I want to thank those patients of mine who donated old crowns and money so I can help the pastor help the orphans in the orphanage in Ouanaminthe Haiti.



Youtube:  When Should a Child See a Dentist For The First Time?

When Should a Child See a Dentist For The First Time?

Hi, this is Doctor Antolak from TheGentleDentist.com in Shelby Township, Michigan. And what I want to talk to about today is a little bit about when a great time to bring your child in.

You know, we have a lot of patients in our Shelby Township dental office who have little ones and they seem to always ask that question, when is the right time to bring your kid in to the dentist for the first time.

You know, I think it is best to bring them in, when they are not having any issues or problems. When they can see us as just regular people, and, so that they can just have some fun at the dental office. You know, especially with our hygiene team that we have.

The ladies here are very friendly, at our dental office. And, you know, we can do some things with riding the chair going up and down, and maybe using a little squirt gun and showing them what to do, and then making it real simple like that just to kind of introduce them to what it’s like to visit the dentist.

It’s also a good time to educate parents on good oral hygiene practices for the children and good nutrition, because one of the things that’s the worst things for kids is especially young children is to have a diets too high in sugars.  Which include not only pop, but juices that are not diluted, juices, fruit roll-ups.

For infants, if they go to bed with milk in a bottle, and it creates something called bottle mouth decay. Which destroys the front teeth and cavities. So, really it’s setting them straight on what good nutrition is, what good nutrition looks like.

The reality is that the bacteria that form cavities really are things that actually transfer from the parent to the child. Children are not born with these bacteria.  So it’s really important to know about good oral hygiene. So that there’s a really good awareness of how to take care of your children’s teeth.

We’ll start seeing your children to do their cleanings of their teeth, maybe between two to three years old. And that’s when they have enough teeth in their mouths when we can start polishing them up. And at that point it’s a simple visit. Once again, no X-rays really to speak of unless there’s a specific problem. And then after the first visit, then it becomes a fun experience at the dentist and something fun to come to.

When Should a Child See a Dentist For The First Time?

So, if you have questions on when should a child see a dentist for the first time, you can feel free to give us a call. My phone number is 586 247 3500. Thank you.


Missing Front Tooth on Young Child in Shelby Township, Michigan

Shelby Township Dentist: So today we had a little boy come in, his name was Kyle. Kyle is only 3 years old, and unfortunately Kyle fell off of a chair and hit his front tooth and actually knocked the front tooth out. You will see in this video what we were able to do to help Kyle out. He’s a real cute boy.

We went ahead and actually took the tooth itself, removed the root of the tooth because the whole tooth came out. And, being that it’s a baby tooth there’s nothing we can do to transplant that back in. If it was an adult tooth we would have just put it right back in as soon as it came out but the fact that it’s a baby tooth, we never want to put it back in the mouth because, there’s an adult tooth that’s developing underneath it that could be affected by putting it back in. Anyhow, we removed the root and we took a little impression of his teeth, and then made a, out of composite, a plastic material, little fins on the back of it, you’ll see part of it. Then we were able to actually bond that in place to his back of his teeth next to them and see what it looks like

Kyle will have these, since he’s 3 years old, will have his teeth for probably another 4 to 5 years and we’ll see how he does with it over a period of time. Here’s Kyle, he’s real cute boy. If there are any questions that you have thought about dentistry or the Gentle Dentist that’s located in Shelby Township, Michigan, give us a call. 586-247-3500.

Shelby Township Dentist: Can you tell me, are you missing something?

Shelby Township Dental Patient: I’m missing a tooth.

Shelby Township Dentist: You’re missing your tooth?

Shelby Township Dental Patient: Oh no!! How it went out my mouth?

Shelby Township Dentist: Let’s see, can you smile and show us what it looks like without your tooth? Can you smile for your mommy?

Shelby Township Dental Patient: Cheese!

Shelby Township Dentist: Yeah, there you go. Ooh. How did you lose this tooth?

Shelby Township Dental Patient: Cheese.

Shelby Township Dentist: Cheese. Let’s see. Lets see what that tooth looks like. Let’s see. There it is or there it was. How did you lose that tooth? Do you remember?

Shelby Township Dental Patient: I don’t really know, it just happened.

Shelby Township Dentist: It just happened, huh?

Shelby Township Dental Patient: I pulled it out.

Shelby Township Dentist: You pulled it out?

Shelby Township Dental Patient: Yeah!

Shelby Township Dentist: You’re silly.

Shelby Township Dental Patient: I don’t pull out my tooth. Can the tooth go back in my mouth? Can I get my tooth?

Shelby Township Dentist: We’re going to get your tooth.

Shelby Township Dental Patient: A tooth, a tooth.

Shelby Township Dentist: Yes let’s see. Can I see that little tooth? Let’s see what the tooth is going to look like. This is going to be your little tooth here. See that? We’re going to have to put it back in your mouth okay?

Shelby Township Dental Patient: Try to stick it on.

Shelby Township Dentist: I will stick it on. Ready? Oh, yeah, we’ll have to do it in just a minute okay?
I have to do something with this first. So, we have to put the glue on it.

Shelby Township Dental Patient: Put glue on?

Shelby Township Dentist: Yeah, we’re going to put glue on it. We’re going to take you for a ride in the chair really quick and we’ll put the glue on there. Just like last time okay?

Shelby Township Dental Patient: I want, I want go down.

Shelby Township Dentist: You want to go for a ride again in the chair?

Shelby Township Dental Patient: Yeah, I want to go.

Shelby Township Dentist: Here you go! Up! Show your mom how you’re going up.We’re going up really high. Look how fast you’re going up. Oh, let’s go down now. You ready? Look at that. That’s pretty cool. Okay, let’s go back down now ready? Here we go! Okay, you’re going to lean back this time. Lay back.

Shelby Township Dental Patient: I did.

Shelby Township Dentist: You did so good.


Shelby Township Dentist: Did you get your tooth in?

Shelby Township Dentist: Yeah.

Shelby Township Dentist: Alright, can you show the camera and smile big.

Shelby Township Dental Patient: Thank you.

Shelby Township Dentist: You’re welcome buddy. Smile so we can see you tooth. Now you’ve got your teeth in place.

Shelby Township Dental Patient’s Mom: Yay! Say thank you.

Shelby Township Dental Patient: Thank you.

Shelby Township Dentist: You’re welcome young man.

Missing Front Tooth on Young Child in Shelby Township, Michigan

If you have any questions regarding missing front teeth in children or any other dental issues your child may have, please give our Shelby Township office a call at 586-247-3500.

Missing Front Tooth on Young Child in Shelby Township, Michigan

The Gentle Dentist Logo

Call Now