Knee-to-Knee Oral Exam

Small children are best examined while lying down. For infants and toddlers, the knee-to-knee oral examination allows you to carefully examine the child's teeth with assistance from a caregiver.

If the child's legs don't fit around the caregiver's body, the child may lie sideways or diagonally on the caregiver's lap.

Procedure

  1. Lift the lip
  2. Examine the soft tissues - tongue, lips, gums
  3. Examine the hard tissues - front, back, sides of all teeth for plaque, white spots, cavities, abscesses, and damaged teeth
  4. Palpate for submucosal clefts.

Step 1

Child is held facing caregiver in a straddle position

Mark Deutchman, MD
Mark Deutchman, MD

Step 2

Child leans back onto examiner while caregiver holds child's hands

Mark Deutchman, MD
Mark Deutchman, MD

Step 3

Exam performed while caregiver holds child's hands and legs

Mark Deutchman, MD
Mark Deutchman, MD