If there is something that children hate more than their homework, it is seeing a dentist. They are terrified of visiting the dentist, and it is quite a task to convince them to go through with it. Dental hygiene for kids is essential, as it will prevent them from getting tooth decay and help them maintain great oral health.
This is where pediatric dentistry comes in. And to learn more about the difference between a general dentist and a pediatric dentist, we spoke Digital Dentistry at Southpoint, who has been working in this specialty field for years. These dentists are specialized in taking care of the oral health of children, from their infancy, all through to their teen years. Read on to find out more about pediatric dentistry, what it entails, and why your kid needs to see one.
What Is The Importance Of Dental Care?
Teeth start to form during the first six months of a baby’s life. By the time they are around four years, they will begin to lose the baby teeth, which will be replaced by secondary teeth. Throughout this journey, dental care is paramount, as kids are prone to decay. It will also prevent them from getting dental diseases and complications, which will be there all through their adult life. It is, therefore, crucial to see a dentist as soon as the teeth start to form to ensure that the child’s dental health is kept up to par.
What Is Pediatric Dentistry?
It is a field of dentistry that specializes in treating children. It is a branch of dentistry that focuses on treating young people, including babies, children, and adolescents. A pediatric dentist is different from a general dentist in that the latter can treat patients of any age. Pediatric dentists, also known as pedodontists, can handle complicated conditions in kids and teens. They are also able to take care of any special needs of these young people, such as dental sealants and fluoride treatments, with ease.
For a more complete definition of pediatric dentistry, feel free to read more at: https://www.aapd.org/globalassets/media/policies_guidelines/i_overview.pdf
What Do Pediatric Dentists do?
Infants can be quite a handful to deal with. It is here that these professionals come in. They understand how babies can be challenging to deal with and have the patience to treat them. They do oral exams on infants to identify any early signs of dental caries. In other instances, they may have to conduct surgery on infants, which requires someone with extensive skills. They will be able to do this procedure while ensuring that your baby is safe.
They also do dental care for children from the time they are infants until when they are adolescents. They also specialize in teaching parents about dental care for their children. This is because they understand that parents influence the eating habits of their children, hence when they are informed, the children will be better placed to avoid tooth decay. They also help the parents know how to stop some of their kids’ bad habits, such as pacifier dependency and thumb-sucking. Also, they teach them about teeth cleaning and the best way to do it for the kid. Diet and nutrition also play a role in how strong one’s teeth grow to be; therefore, pediatric dentists advise parents on the best diet and foods to incorporate into their lives to ensure that the enamel is not stripped off. Doing this will ensure that the long term development of permanent teeth is not impaired.
These dentists also do routine dental work such as diagnosing uneven teeth, installing braces, and fix cavities. They also manage any gum diseases that you may have and care for any dental injuries that may occur, such as knocked-out teeth. They also diagnose oral conditions that are associated with diseases such as asthma, diabetes, and a congenital heart defect.
Pediatric dentists undergo four years of dental school where they learn general dentistry and get a doctoral degree. After that, they partake in two years of residency training that focuses on pediatric dental care. Here, they are trained in child oral trauma and psychology. They are also trained on treatment issues that affect children, such as orthodontics and anesthesia. They are also able to interact with children, especially those with special needs, and learn how to apply their schooling to real-life situations. After these six years, they are ready to practice it professionally.
When Should Your Child See A Pediatric Dentist?
The ideal time to see this professional is when the first tooth erupts, which is around six months. They will examine the development of the baby’s mouth and be able to detect any problems early on. The sooner you begin your visit, the better the child’s dental health will be. The dentist will also advise on how to safeguard against dental problems, which will be great for you.
This YouTube video does a great job of explaining the specifics of this kind of specialist:
The office of the pediatric dentist is usually very kid-friendly and welcoming to make the children comfortable. The room décor is often also in great colors to appeal to the kids. You may find a brightly colored wall paint or mural that will keep the kids entertained. Also, in the waiting area, you will likely find a fish tank to ease anxiety, and kids’ magazines and games to keep them occupied. This will help the kid relax, which will be beneficial to the visit. It will also encourage the kids to want to go back six months later as the experience is positive and will keep them happy.
Visiting a pediatric dentist is one of the best things that you could do for your child. They will love the experience and will not be that scared to go back the next time. Also, these professionals will ensure that the oral health of your child is maintained, all through to their adolescent years. They are the best option that you could go for.