TABLE 3.

Recommendations for Medical Offices That Are Considering Fluoride Varnish

  1. Get ancillary staff’s support and buy-in. Elicit input on how fluoride varnish can work in your office setting.

  2. Use your front office staff to identify potential fluoride varnish recipients. Mark the chart in an obvious way to designate fluoride varnish eligibility, and incorporate fluoride varnish as an option on preprinted order sheets.

  3. Identify designated time, space, and staff for fluoride varnish application. In younger children, fluoride varnish is usually best done after the PCP’s visit but before vaccines. Make use of other types of visits, such as acute care and sports physicals, for fluoride varnish application to older children.

  4. During your oral examination, assess the child’s teeth and oral hygiene. Use discussion about fluoride varnish as an opportunity to address the importance of preventive oral health and professional dental care. A brief written description of fluoride varnish including its safety, its benefits, how it is applied, and aftercare could be given to families when they arrive for their appointment to save in-depth explanations during the PCP’s visit.

  5. Depending on needs in your community, consider offering fluoride varnish to non-Medicaid families for a small fee.

  6. Explore, develop, and use dental resources in your community to improve access to care for your patients.