How soon should you see a dentist for your baby? I thought it was okay to see one just after my little one’s first birthday. And we went to meet Dr. Premila Naidu of Small Bites. Small bites is an exclusive dental care for children by Dr. Premila in Indiranagar, Bangalore. As the little one relaxed in the toy filled tastefully decorated kids waiting room, we adjusted ourselves in miniature chairs and got chatting and here is the excerpt.
Dr. Premila, Can you tell us more about the Small Bites concept and its mission?
All children have a right to smile and we believe children need nothing but the best. Our desire for an exclusive child dental clinic gave birth to “SMALL BITES”, where through child friendly environment and a fun loving team, every effort is made to make you and your child comfortable. It is this strong belief that the dental team, with the support and help from parents, can surely give children healthy teeth to last a life time.
Do you also consult at other hospitals?
I am a visiting consultant at Fortis Hospital, Narayana Hrudayalaya Hospital & its chain of dental clinics and various other dental centers across Bengaluru. I am also American Heart Association certified, advanced cardio-vascular life support provider.
This is a regular question on Talk To Tiger. Can you tell me about your studies and childhood?
I was one of the three sisters and my childhood was very smooth and calm. I was given a choice to do whatever I wanted to pursue in my life and this freedom made me very independent and thoughtful. I am glad my parents respected my choice and encouraged me. I always wanted to be a doctor and I graduated from the Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences, Karnataka in 2004 and did my Masters in Preventive & Pediatric Dentistry, standing third in the university in 2009. I met Guru (who kept disappearing from one room to another attending the patients with a smile while Premila chatted with us) and our journey started. Guru is Dr. Gurudev who is also a dentist and cosmetic Oral Implantologist and runs the ‘Smile Station’ in the same premises.
What do you think about pediatric dental problems in India? How is the awareness level?
Pediatric dental problem are on the rise especially in India as we do not usually bother about kids milk teeth as they are temporary. But correction at this age is important to ensure the jaw is set properly and the permanent teeth are healthy. The awareness level is low at present even in the cities but thankfully is on the rise.
What age should kids be brought for a checkup?
Ideally the parents should come in 3 months before planning for the kid as it is essential to treat the mother in some cases off any infection she might be carrying. Once the baby is conceived, it becomes difficult for treatment. Once the baby is born you must visit a doctor around her first birthday and after that a visit once in six months should be fine. She pauses to fill air into a balloon for her little Sid who ventures into the room and seats himself up on a chair next to me and shows off his drawing skills. We have stickers, badges, balloons, crayons, toys and many more to make the kids feel welcome!
What steps should be taken to ensure a child’s teeth are clean and healthy?
Ensure the kid’s teeth are clean and neat. When very young wipe the kids teeth with a wet cloth to clean off any food particles. Never feed the baby lying down, especially in the night. Wipe your baby’s teeth of the night’s feed. When they start eating chocolates, cornflakes and other sticky things you should be doubly sure they brush their teeth properly. Oral hygiene should be treated with utmost importance and you should consult your doctor regularly.
How important is it to treat dental problems at a young age?
Children are very conscious about their appearance. Hence it is essential to correct any problems at a young age. I have seen parents who came back and told us that their kid is smiling heartfully again after having a clip or correction. In some cases I have seen the kid grow more both in personality and confidence.
Aren’t kids scared of sitting in the dentist’s chair?
Yes. Usually they do. At Small Bites we try and ensure that the kid is comfortable and is in a playful environment where he/she is relaxed. Apart from the regular medical equipment and procedures, we also have a monitor to play nice cartoons which they can watch while being treated. Most kids start operating the monitor as if it is a touch screen and I have to get it upgraded she exclaims.
After checking that our little angel’s teeth are absolutely fine we take leave and I don’t have a feeling that we had been to a doctor’s appointment. Dr. Premila comes across as a family member or a friend who can help your little one’s smile remains as beautiful.
You must visit Small Bites to meet Dr. Premila to check up your little one’s teeth.
Address: #675, 9th A Main, old syndicate bank road, parallel to CMH road, Indiranagar 1st stage Bangalore, India 560038.
Timings: Mon: 10:00 am – 1:00 pm Tue: 10:00 am – 7:00 pm Wed – Fri: 10:00 am – 1:00 pm Sat: 4:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Call: 080-41256715, 080 – 25200226