There is no place like home – back to work some magic on your munchkins at Little Critter Pediatric Dentistry.
Meet Dr. Keta
I have known since kindergarten that I wanted to be a dentist. It sounds silly because who really likes the dentist? Well, I did. The spinning brush and array of toothpaste flavors and the post-appointment treats for being “good” were exciting! Plus, as a first born, I was always happy to impress my parents with a no-cavity report. When I discovered there was a dental specialty for kids, it was an easy career choice for me. I’m the grownup that still prefers to sit at the kids’ table, who wants to have a unicorn as a pet, and who lives in a land of rainbows. So, I became a pediatric dentist. 🙂
My dental experience was idealized because I never had cavities. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry reports that more than 40 percent of kids have cavities by age five. I have seen dozens of two-year-old’s with over 15 cavities. It is heartbreaking. Not only because cavities are preventable with diet and hygiene changes, but because treating a toddler with all the bells and whistles of a filling can be like wrestling an alligator – that’s no fun for the patient, the parent, or the dentist.
My dental philosophy focuses predominantly on prevention and education, and, when needed, high-quality restorative care.
Here are some tips for keeping your child’s smile healthy:
- Brush 2x/day and floss 1x/day as soon as teeth are present
- Use a fluoride toothpaste; the size of a grain of rice (age 1-3) and size of a pea (age 4+)
- Use a fluoride mouth rinse as soon as your child can spit
- Do not allow child to go to bed with a bottle/sippy cup
- Avoid gummy treats and candies, including fruit snacks and gummy vitamins
- Limit juice to 6-8oz per day, at mealtime, and always dilute with water
- Drink mostly water – beware of sports drinks, fancy coffees, energy drinks, and juices
- Visit a pediatric dentist around age 1 for all of the education you need to keep your children cavity-free!
My husband, Matt, and I are leaving Chicago and coming home to the Valley to open Little Critter Pediatric Dentistry. We both seep with nostalgia remembering childhoods in Neenah, and there is no other place we want to raise our tribe. Ahava, our daughter, and Gus Gus, our Flemish Giant rabbit, will both frequent the practice; one to win you over with baby kisses and hedgehog pouf hair and the other to entertain you with tricks on his tippy toes and soft snuggles. We are delighted to be home and get to know you and your family.
As Matt and I raise a daughter, I want her to believe in the same mantra my parents instilled in me: you can be anything you want when you grow up, as long as you work hard and do the right thing. My parenting will certainly nudge Ahava to take education seriously and include the excluded. I was a nerdy, nice kid at Neenah High School, and I knew it was my brain and my kindness that would take me places. So, after ten years of extra schooling, I can certainly say that I have been hustling for my successes and trying to show grace in my mistakes. This path has not been easy, as I juggle work and family, but I want it all, so we are going to work hard and do the right thing – I know it will be grand.
More than a Dentist
As a wife, mom, and pediatric dentist, I hope my daughter and my patients look to me as a positive role model. I strive to fill them up with encouragement and confidence, over dental things and real-life happenings and be a safe place to be themselves as we establish a trusting relationship. I will hold you accountable. I will sing to your children and hug them as they leave. I will wear silly glasses and crazy tights. We are going to have a lot of fun together, and there might be some honest talks and tough moments, but you will always feel heard and loved at our practice. I will treat your children as if they were my own. We cannot wait to watch your children grow up with bright, healthy smiles!