Baby having dental screening

Free Dental Screenings Reduce Tooth Decay Rates

March 07, 2017 |

Mountain Park knows that juggling a career, children and everyday chores can be a lot to handle, so when it comes to going to the doctor we make it as effortless as possible. That is why we recently launched our integrated dental program. What does that mean for our families? Children can see a dentist sooner, decreasing future dental problems and saving money in the long run.

“We’ve learned most parents don’t understand a lot about preventive dentistry,” Dr. Angela Relf, Dental Department Chair said.

“Parents understand taking their children to the dentist when they are in pain or when there’s a broken tooth, but they don’t understand that by going to the dentist regularly, you can prevent having to go for problems.”

And it’s almost never too early. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends taking your children for their first dental visit by their first birthday.

Children of all ages can get a free dental screening. It’s never too early to start caring for those teeth!

At Mountain Park, we provide our patients with whole-patient care. When a parent brings their child in for a well-check visit, they are also able to consult with a Registered Dietitian, Behavioral Health Consultant, and now a Dentist.

“We bring a dentist into the room starting as young as four-months old,” Dr. Relf explained. “Parents are so happy to see us because they have a lot of questions. No one talks to them about what to do when a baby is teething or when they should see a dentist or the type of toothpaste to use. That’s what we are here for.”

With the program in full swing, our dental department has seen a 5 percent decrease in tooth decay among our pediatric patients in the last year.

“Caries, also known as tooth decay, is the number 1 infectious disease in children in the country,” Dr. Relf informed us. “Children miss more days of school from tooth pain than a cold, and we are trying to change that.”

In Arizona alone, more than half of kindergarten children (52 percent) have experienced decay. Mountain Park wants to prevent this and give our children the gift of a healthy smile.

“What Mountain Park has is special,” Dr. Relf said. “We want to let parents know that this is really important. If you start brushing your child’s teeth, flossing, bringing them in every six months for a fluoride treatment and getting a professional cleaning done, your child may not miss a lot of school.”

Mountain Park Health Center aims to provide our patients with the best, high-quality, all-inclusive care. Now we are able to add pediatric dental screenings during routine checkups to the extensive list of services we provide – all in one exam room.

“It would have taken me a lot longer to bring my son to the dentist if it wasn’t for the integrated dental program,” Claudia Canales, a parent at our Gateway Clinic told us. “Everything is here and everyone is really nice, I like it here.”

To schedule a well-check visit for your child and a free dental screening, call 602-243-7277.

For more information, please email