Meet Dr. Steve R. Lynn


About Dr. Lynn:

Dr. Lynn offers dental certification and continuing education courses for dentists, dental hygienists and dental assistants, as well as provides pediatric dental services and education to children of all ages. He freely gives all the credit to God for the success of his practice and educational programs.


As a Board Certified Specialist in Pediatric Dentistry, Dr. Lynn serves the Tullahoma, TN, area with over 20 years experience. Dr. Lynn is a graduate of the University of Tennessee, a recipient of the Dean's Leadership Award and was on the Dean's List for Academics.


Are you afraid of going to the dentist? A better question may be is your child afraid of going to the dentist? Either way, Dr. Lynn tries to make your child's visit to the dentist fun and enjoyable. Dr. Lynn sings songs as he checks teeth. We have a puppet fish and alligator and giant teeth the children can help to brush. Dr. Lynn is committed to helping children. He serves on the local Tullahoma School Board and the Head Start board. He donates many hours to the community going to do oral exams at the surrounding Head Start programs and volunteers at the local elementry schools to teach children how to brush, floss and take care of their teeth.


Dr. Lynn's 31 Facts for Happy Healthy Teeth:

 SECTION 1. Expectant mother(we start to see patients at 6 months old)
1 .An expectant mother should abstain, if at all possible, from taking any drug or other substance into her body which may cause a deleterious effect on the child’s teeth. Sometimes antibiotics administered to an expectant mother or to a baby may have a marked effect on the baby’s developing teeth. For example, tetracycline has been shown to cause irreversible staining in teeth. Minocycline also has been shown to cause a blue color to bones and staining in teeth. Sometimes the bone will be blue and show through in areas under the gums.
2. In the third trimester of pregnancy, some expectant mothers may benefit from chewing a xylitol gum like Trident Extra Care, Ice Breakers Ice Cubes, Carefree Koolers, or Theragum to lower Streptococcus Mutans bacterial levels. This may prevent transmission of the bacteria to the child. Dr. Lynn prefers products with a higher concentration of xylitol ( Xylitol should be the first listed ingredient)
3. Adequate nutrition of the mother during pregnancy is very important to the child’s development of strong, healthy teeth that are more resistant to decay.
4. Mothers with known high Streptococcus Mutans bacterial counts may use mouth trays like football mouth guards, filled halfway with stannous fluoride gels like Gel-Kam, Omni-Gel or Just for kids, leaving these in place in the mouth for five minutes per day for two weeks. This has been shown to reduce the levels of the decay-causing bacteria for up to three or four months, and thus aid in preventing bacterial transmission from parent(or other primary caregiver) to the child. ************************************************************************************************************
SECTION 2. Infant
5. Nursing (breast feeding) a baby, when possible, is usually always best for the teeth. This will aid in providing optimal nutrition and may help repent Respiratory Syncitial Virus (RSV) and other diseases. When nursing, it is best to ensure that the baby does not remain attached to the breast while sleeping. After they teeth erupt, this may lead to the disease called Early Childhood Caries, commonly known as Baby Bottle Tooth Decay or Nursing caries.
6. Never allow an infant/child to fall asleep with a bottle of anything but water. Always brush after drinking milk, juice or other beverages before bedtime. After brushing only give the infant/child water.
7. Avoid the use of distilled water, water purified by reverse osmosis and ready to feed formulas. Avoid boiling the infant’s water for an extended time; this will help ensure the water and /or formula contains an optimal amount of fluoride and minerals.
8. A parent should never allow anyone to blow on the child’s food to cool it, use the child’s silverware without washing it, or sip from each other’s drinks. This passes the bacteria, which is mainly responsible for tooth decay, from one person, to another. This can also transmit other viral or bacterial infections. A person should not blow directly into the baby’s face as this can spread droplets of bacteria-containing saliva into the child’s mouth.
9. After birth, for optimal dental health, the child’s diet should contain proper amounts of vitamins, minerals and fluoride.
10. The baby’s first dental exam should be performed by six months of age. This allows for discussion of ways to help prevent many of the problems associated with oral disease. Also, this allows for a timely prescription of a fluoride dietary supplement. Check-ups every six months may be very important. This way, a dental problem may be addressed before serious damage may occur.
11. When the baby drinks only breast milk, bottled waters with no fluoride, well water, or spring water, or ready-to-feed formulas, a fluoride prescription may be necessary.
12. The parent should brush and floss the baby’s teeth as soon as the teeth erupt in the mouth. Care should be taken to help prevent transmission of the decay causing bacterial agents from the parent to child. This includes proper hand washing prior to flossing or brushing the child’s teeth. Care should be taken to prevent transmission of bacteria from one child to another.
SECTION 3. Child
13. A parent should always assist the child with brushing and flossing. Children are not skilled enough to do the kind of job necessary for proper brushing and flossing of teeth. I recommend daily assistance at each brushing until approximately eleven years of age, then once-per-day assistance with the child when he or she is old enough to brush the teeth alone. This assistance may be offered into early teenage years. Please make sure all surfaces are brushed. Turn the bristles of the brush toward the gums at a 45 degree angle, so that the bacteria and plaque can be removed under the gums in the cleaning process. The floss also should gently go under the gums until it reaches a natural stop, allowing the floss to wrap around the tooth like a letter “C”. Gently use up and down motions to clean each tooth, including behind the last tooth, also flossing where a single tooth is not adjacent to another. If gums bleed when brushing or flossing, it generally means it is done incorrectly and not frequently enough, leaving bacteria under gums to cause inflammation and gum infections which can eventually lead to periodontal disease. Warm salt water rinses can help gums heal while adjusting to proper brushing and flossing techniques. (1 tsp salt to tall glass of water, swish and spit)
14. Do not allow the child to swallow toothpaste or fluorides other than systemic dietary fluoride supplements. The child’s total fluoride intake needs to be evaluated to help reduce the risk of over-medicating or leading to fluorosis of teeth. Too little fluoride may create the risk of tooth decay; too much fluoride may lead to enamel discoloration.
15. The two most important times to brush and floss the teeth are after breakfast and at bedtime. Brushing the tongue is important for the child’s dental health. A tongue scraper or special tongue brush may be used. Proper cleaning of these after use is important, as in keeping the toothbrush clean.
16. After fourteen months of age, I recommend brushing a barely visible amount (smaller than a match head amount) of a topical fluoride, like Prevident, or Gel-Kam etc on the child’s teeth. Apply the fluoride front to back, on the top of, and in-between the teeth, using caution to prevent the child from swallowing it. Wipe out the extra, and /or have the child lean forward while brushing, thus allowing the saliva to drain from the child’s mouth.
17. A special fluoride varnish may be applied to all teeth periodically, as needed. This is different from the routine fluoride treatment, which we perform at cleaning time. Fluoride varnish is a very sticky resin that has a higher concentration of fluoride in it. When painted on dry teeth it sets up in the presence of saliva and remains in place for 24 hours, thus allowing the fluoride to leach into the enamel of the teeth and help make it stronger. This has been shown to have up to an 81.2 percent remineralization rate according to a study of Head Start children performed at the University of Florida.
18. MI Paste is recommended for children under the age of 6 (depending upon individual needs) and MI Paste Plus with fluoride for children over 6.years of age. MiPaste puts calcium and phosphate back into the teeth helping repair weakened enamel. In some cases improves discolored areas. This is a at home treatment. Two times daily rub on and hold in mouth for up to 3 min. and spit, do not rinse. You may use MI Paste after brushing with Prevident toothpaste.
19. An electric or battery operated toothbrush with a rotating head is recommended for better cleaning.
20. If you live in, or move to, a location where the water is not fluoridated, or begin drinking some well water or spring water that does not contain enough fluoride, a prescription for dietary fluoride may be necessary.
21. If you notice a change of color in the child’s teeth, have an evaluation by the dentist.
22. It is advisable to get a child accustomed to drinking from a cup by nine months of age. Discontinue the use of a bottle and /or pacifier, and /or wean the child shortly after the first birthday (maybe my eighteen months of age). This may help prevent other problems as well.
23. Never allow the child to drink chocolate, orange, strawberry or other flavored milks, sugary or acidic beverages of any kind or any soft drink (cola). The following beverages may pose a dental risk to the child: Juicy Juice, Gatorade, Kool-Aid, Fruit Punch, Sunny Delight, and Ovaltine due to added corn syrup, acids and sugars etc.
24. We recommend regular fluoridated city water, fluoridated natural spring water that is not treated by reverse osmosis or distillation. White milk and juice that is labeled 100% juice not-from-concentrate and low acid is best. Dilute juice with water to further reduce risk and drink through a straw with juice to get beverage past the teeth.
25. Avoid chewy, sticky sugar-containing candy such as Star Burst, Airheads, Gummy Bears, taffy, toffee, and caramels. Avoid sour candy, as this is extra hard on teeth due to additional acid content. Also, avoid breakfast cereals high in sugar, and chewy fruit rolls.
26. Children may have a hard time letting go of oral habits like thumb or finger sucking, tongue trusting, or bruxism (grinding). These habits may be corrected by an oral appliance.
27. Children playing contact sports should wear a high-quality protective mouth guard. Injuries should be addressed quickly if tooth is mobile, the gums bled, turns dark or other color, gum swells etc. In the case of a broken tooth, put the broken part in a container and bring to your appointment. If the tooth is knocked out, put the tooth in cold milk and bring to the appointment. In any of these cases make an appointment to be seen quickly, or if emergency, go to the nearest emergency room.
28. Children exhibiting erosion of the teeth may have a condition known as gastro-intestinal esophageal reflux disease (GERD). Treatment should be received promptly to reduce a 43-times greater risk of esophageal cancer.
29. Permanent molars and premolar teeth may be covered with a protective plastic-like coating known as a sealant to help protect against decay in the grooves and pits.
30. All family members should receive regular dental cleanings, examinations, x-rays, and screenings, along with special fluoride applications. (We start seeing children at the age of 6 months and follow them through their teen years).
31. For any of the following injuries, contact the dentist immediately; injuries that cause teeth to break, loose teeth, gums to bleed. Likewise if a tooth is ever knocked completely out of mouth, place tooth in cold white milk, and contact the dentist.
** treats Dr. Lynn approves of in moderation are: fruit, homemade freezer pops from approved juices, cheddar cheese, yogurt, occasional ice cream, frozen yogurt, solid chocolate like a Hershy bar, Jello, pudding, etc. Xylitol gum is recommended: such as ice Breakers, Ice Cubes, Carefree Kooler’s, Trident X-tra Care or Theragum, where xylitol is the first ingredient. Xylitol candy may be found at some health food stores or online sites such as Please note IceBreaker “candy” is NOT approved by Dr Lynn for caries reduction, it is not a xylitol product.