Patient-Centered Dental Home
The dental home is the ongoing relationship between the dentist and the patient, inclusive of all aspects of oral health care delivered in a comprehensive, continuously accessible, coordinated, and family-centered way. Establishment of a dental home should begin no later than 12 months of age and include referral to dental specialists when appropriate.” In summary, the ideal characteristics of a Dental Home are:
- Culturally Competent
- Comprehensive oral health care, including acute and preventive care.
- Comprehensive assessment of oral diseases and conditions.
- Individualized preventive dental health programs.
- Plan for acute dental trauma.
- Guidance about growth and development issues.
- Information about care for the child’s teeth and gingivae.
- Dietary counseling as appropriate.
- Referrals to dental specialists when care cannot be directly provided by the dental home.
- Education regarding future referrals to adult dental providers. Source: American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD)