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Dental office offers pain-free fieldtrip for local kids
First Step Dental assistant Rose Mendoza shows Crowell School's afternoon kindergarten classes what it's like to sit in the patient's chair while receiving a cleaning and check up. - photo by CANDY PADILLA / The Journal

Local children from preschool through kindergarten, and some daycare groups, brushed up on oral hygiene basics at First Step Dental on Friday during educational field trips to celebrate Dental Health Month. 

“The goal of this field trip is to educate children on their dental hygiene practices and to show that the dentist office isn’t a scary place.  We have them come in for a private visit so that they feel comfortable visiting a dentist’s office in the future,” said Debbie Silveira of First Step Dental.

The office closed off half of its building for the special visits.  Children rotated between four stations that consisted of learning to brush and floss properly, experiencing sitting in the dentist chair and viewing equipment, discussing what things are good and bad for teeth when eating and storytime about a dinosaur who overcame his fear of visiting the dentist.

An estimated 1,000 children will visit the office during two scheduled fieldtrip days, along with children Dr. Brian Kelleher will visit at different school sites. 

All children who visited the office received a “goodie” bag that had educational forms regarding dental hygiene, a toothbrush, toothpaste, floss and a sticker.