Dentistry for Kids
Dentistry for children, also known as pediatric dentistry or pedodontics, is a specialized branch of dentistry for young people. We like children to have their first dental visit by their first birthday.
How are Pediatric Dentists different from General Dentists?
Pediatric dentists differ from general dentists because they require additional training so they can treat infants, young children, adolescents, and teenagers.
Once a general dentist graduates from a recognized institution and acquires a license in the state in which he practices, he can treat patients of any age. However, like in medicine, there are a variety of complex situations that require the knowledge of a pediatric specialist. Pediatric dentists receive specific training and are thus equipped to deal with problems that pertain to children and teenagers.
What do Pediatric Dentists do?
Pedodontists perform a variety of specialized procedures, including dental health exams for babies, emergency oral care, and managing space after a baby tooth is lost too early. They also prescribe relaxation medications and inform their clients on proper dental care and nutrition.
We seek to foster a welcoming, kid-friendly environment in our office. As such, we have plenty of kids’ magazine, games, and a fish tank in the waiting room and brightly painted walls, murals, and kid-sized dental equipment in the exam area. All of this helps kids feel more comfortable in our office and alleviates unnecessary fears.
Everyone on our team loves children and wants to make sure your kids have the best experience possible. When a child has an enjoyable visit, both parents and children will look forward to the next appointment six months later.
Common Dental Concerns for Children
It is important to take care of your child’s primary teeth. Even though they inevitably fall out, they have an important role to play in helping your child chew and speak properly. Many of the treatment options for adults, such as orthodontics, sealants, and x-rays, apply to children as well.
Once your child turns 6, they can expect to have wiggly teeth. It’s best to let them wiggle their teeth until they naturally fall out. This will reduce the bleeding and pain that normally accompany lost teeth.
Your child can get cavities if foods that contain sugar remain in his mouth for extended periods. Bacteria can then form on the teeth and erode enamel. Saliva will wash away the acid in between meals, but kids who are constantly eating may not have time to wash the acid away.
We also use methods and appliances to try to prevent sucking of thumbs and fingers. Children who suck past the age of 3 can change the growth patterns of the jaw and cause significant misalignment of their teeth.
Proper Oral Care for Children
It would help if you started using toothpaste to brush your child’s teeth when he reaches age 2. Children younger than that often swallow toothpaste while brushing instead of spitting it out. Start with a toothpaste that is safe to swallow. Once your child has two teeth that touch each other, floss in between them once every day with either regular dental floss or with a plastic floss holder.
For more information, please contact our office at (970) 812-3959.