By AML Publisher
Photos courtesy of Belle Vie Photography
February is National Children’s Dental Health Month. So, there is no better time to catch up with one of the Main Line’s most beloved orthodontists—Bryn Mawr’s Dr. Catherine Foote. Foote, an Ardmore native, Lower Merion grad and third generation dentist holds an undergraduate degree from The University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Foote dedicated ten years to higher education at the University of Pennsylvania where she received a Bachelor’s degree in Biology followed by a DMD degree and Certificate of Orthodontics. In her state of the art, newly renovated office across from Bryn Mawr Hospital, Dr. Foote treats both children and adults, offering traditional braces, ceramic braces, Invisalign, and take-home whitening.
Each February, the American Dental Association (ADA) sponsors National Children’s Dental Health Month to raise awareness about the importance of oral health. NCDHM messages and materials have reached millions of people in communities across the country. According to the ADA, developing good habits at an early age and scheduling regular dental visits helps children get a good start on a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums.
Foote Orthodontics’ mission is to provide the highest quality orthodontic care in a comfortable and welcoming environment where patients are treated with excellence personally and clinically. Dr. Foote deals with some of the most common issues parents and prepubescent children face and she advises that the earlier a patient is seen, the better a plan can be put in place for proper care. “Interceptive orthodontics helps to take advantage of growth. By evaluating the bite when there are still baby teeth, we can deal with any issues and plan accordingly from there.”
AroundMainLine.com: What is the common age or scenario where a parent would bring a child into your practice for the first time?
Dr. Foote: The American Association of Orthodontics recommends that children be screened at the age of seven to evaluate for issues such as thumb sucking, cross bites, spacing, or crowding. Generally, between the ages of 8-10 years old is an ideal time to begin interceptive orthodontics, if necessary. This is often referred to as Phase I treatment.
AML: Thumb sucking with an older child, I would assume, is a sensitive issue. How do you approach the parent and child to deal with the habit?
DF: I find that thumb sucking is a very pacifying behavior for young children. I don’t think parents have to be too worried about it until it starts to affect permanent dental structure. With time, consistent thumb sucking will affect the shape of the palate and can flare the upper teeth. School age children should not be sucking their thumb all day. If that is the case, there should be an evaluation for some type of orthodontic intervention, which is typically around 7-8 years old.
AML: You are a female in a medical field primarily dominated by men. But, considering your background it’s not so surprising since you come from a big dental family and are the oldest of seven!
DF: My grandfather was a dentist, my father is an oral surgeon, as is my uncle, and two other uncles are orthodontists. That is all on my mother’s side of the family. My father’s brother is a general dentist. I was lucky enough to attend dental school at Penn with two of my cousins, and one of my brothers is in dental school now. Dentistry is a great profession, especially for women, and I am beyond lucky and blessed to be fortunate enough to do what I do!
AML: I’ve mentioned you to a few people lately, and it was evident to me you have a stellar reputation across the Main Line. What makes your practice such a success?
DF: I treat my patients as I would want to be treated. I feel like we are a very comfortable, caring office that is genuinely concerned with the best interests of the patient and giving them the attention that they need.
Dr. Foote’s office is located in the heart of Bryn Mawr on South Bryn Mawr Avenue between Lancaster Avenue and Haverford Avenue across from Bryn Mawr Hospital.
Address: 101 South Bryn Mawr Avenue, Suite 320, Bryn Mawr, PA 19010
For office hours and additional information, call 610-525-6142. Visit their website at www.footeorthodontics.com or follow them on Twitter. Dr. Foote can also be reached via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.