Protecting Kids’ Teeth and Educating Parents
Jenna Schulten, DMD and owner of Dupont Pediatric Dentistry, recalls how emphatic her father was that she and her siblings maintain good oral hygiene when they were children. “I wanted to become a dentist because my father was the only one in his family who had his original teeth. My grandparents had dentures at a young age, and my aunt and uncle had dentures in their 20s,” she says.
Since starting her practice in 2014, Jenna has been devoted to helping parents understand that having healthy teeth goes beyond the standard practice of regular brushing. “[The kids] come to us once or twice a year, but the in-between is the most important part. If they are not taking care of their oral hygiene in between, we can’t do much,” she says.
As a mother of three kids, Jenna understands that every parent wants their child to be healthy, and she strives to create an environment that will make the parents and their children more comfortable. If a child is fearful, Jenna allows the child to sit in a parent’s lap during the entire dental visit. “I try to put myself in the parent’s shoes, and I treat every child like they are my own,” she says.
The services Jenna offers include an overview with the parent about oral hygiene. She and her staff do fillings, silver crowns, pulpotomies, space maintenance, frenectomies, and dental trauma. They also offer sedations and have privileges at several ORs. In addition, they provide habit appliances for kids who suck their thumb or have a tongue thrust. The appliance, which is similar to a retainer, prevents kids from inadvertently damaging their dental oral cavity.
Jenna, who also has a dental practice in New Albany and Frankfort, says she wants to be a leader for her staff and is excited about her achievements. “Almost every day, I feel a little more accomplished — especially with being a woman in this profession and a boss. I learn something new from my staff,” she says.