During April 2017, the Early Childhood Center enrolled a family that we thought would be a challenge. The reason being, the mother was deaf and we didn’t know for sure how we would communicate with her. Once it was determined, our communication would mainly be by text, the Family Advocate began contacting her regularly. The Family Advocate explained to the mother her son needed an appointment for his dental exam. Another challenge for the family was they didn’t have transportation to take her son to the dentist. The Family Advocate knew the importance of getting him a dental appointment. He rarely ate or drank due to mouth pain. Family members helped the mother schedule the child’s appointment with Family Medical Center’s Pediatric Dentist at their Ironton Campus. The mother texted her family’s advocate and informed her of the dentist appointment with the date and time. They immediately reserved a company vehicle to transport the child to his dental appointment.
During the dentist appointment, the child became aggressive and was determined not to let anyone look at him, touch him, or begin to open his mouth. After the mother and family advocate consulted with the dentist, it was decided the child would have outpatient surgery at Cabell Huntington hospital.
A week later at the hospital, the little boy was sedated and he had four decayed teeth extracted and four other teeth capped. The mother was grateful for everything the Head Start program did for her family, but most of all, that her son would no longer be in pain. She now has established a dental home for her family at Family Medical Centers.