Pediatric Dentistry | Why Your Child May Need A Specialist

As a parent, you always want what's best for your child. Dental care is no exception. While traditional dentists provide quality care, a pediatric dentist specializes in the oral health of children and could be a better choice for your child. Here's what you need to know about pediatric dentists and the specialized care they provide.

What Is a Pediatric Dentist?

A pediatric dentist is a dentist that has decided to specialize in dental treatment for children from their first dental visit through adolescence. They undergo an additional two-year residency program in pediatric dentistry after graduating as a dentist. During their residency, pediatric dentists gain expertise in children's dental care, including preventive care, tooth decay, orthodontics, and behavior management.

Does a Pediatric Dentist Only See Children?

In spite of their title, it's important to recognize that pediatric dentists don't exclusively see children. While they specialize in the particular oral health needs of children, making them more equipped to handle the dental issues kids commonly face, they also treat adults with developmental disabilities or those with special needs, such as Down syndrome or autism. As a result, pediatric dentists are uniquely positioned to understand the complexities of these patients' needs and provide them with quality dental care.

What Are the Benefits of Seeing a Pediatric Dentist?

Early dental care is essential to prevent future dental problems, which is why expert care in pediatric dentistry is critical. In addition, there are many benefits of selecting a pediatric dentist over a general dentist, including:

  • Advanced techniques. A pediatric dentist is trained in the most advanced techniques and treatments specifically for children, including preventative care.
  • Kid-friendly atmosphere. Most pediatric dentists' offices are designed to create a friendly and welcoming environment for children. Toys, televisions, fish tanks, and even video games are often found in the waiting room to help kids feel comfortable.
  • Behavior management. Pediatric dentists are equipped to handle any challenging behavior a child may display during their appointment. They use distraction techniques, such as bubbles or singing songs, to the best of their ability to make the experience a positive one for your child.
  • Education and advice. Pediatric dentists are more than just trained in the latest dental techniques. They are also educators. They have a wealth of knowledge and experience working with children and can offer practical advice to parents.

Childhood dental problems that are left untreated can lead to severe complications that require extensive dental work, cause pain, and even require surgeries in the future. While pediatric dentists focus on preventive care, such as fluoride treatments, sealants, and regular check-ups, to ensure your child's dental health progresses nicely throughout their growth and development, their end goal is to make your child feel comfortable at the dentist and lay the groundwork for regular dental visits for life. 

Contact a pediatric dentist to learn more.