Not every dentist is cut out to treat children’s oral health needs. Pediatric dentists specialize in treating only kids. Here are some great benefits to taking your child to a specialist for children’s teeth.
Dentists who specialize in treating children have learned the specific needs for their oral health. These professionals know what it takes to keep a child’s mouth in the best condition possible. Pediatric dentists have the knowledge to effectively care for all aspects of kids’ oral health.
Pediatric dentists have training and experience to deal with issues unique to children. Problems like incorrect tooth formation, crowded teeth, and jaw alignment are all things these dentists are trained to watch for so that issues can be caught early. These specialists are trained to recognize and diagnose problems and provide solutions as soon as possible. Dentists who work primarily with adults may not spot problems in childrens’ mouths as quickly as pediatric dentists.
Kids need to understand the importance of proper dental care so they’ll have the best chance of good oral health throughout life. Pediatric dentists are skilled at teaching good habits as children grow, as well as motivating kids to practice the techniques that they learn from the dentist. Also, these dentists create a welcoming environment with youngsters in mind. Good experiences at the dentist’s office increase children’s willingness to maintain dental visits when they become adults.
One of the great things about most pediatric dentists is that they love kids, which means they tend to have great bedside manner in dealing with them. They know how to handle children’s behavior and emotions, and are experienced in distracting kids from the procedures so that they remain calm and content. Pediatric dentists are also capable of dealing with parents so that they are comfortable and confident in their child’s dental care.
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You can take your kids to a general dentist, but you may want to consider a specialized dentist who is trained in techniques just for children. Many kids are more comfortable and willing to see a dentist who is targeted to them. So what makes a pediatric dentist different than a regular one?
This type of medical professional has completed additional training and education for treating dental problems in children. They are qualified in general dentistry, but also in procedures unique to kids, anesthesia for younger ages, and basic orthodontics. Pediatric dentists also receive training about children’s psychology and how to handle behaviors specific to this age group. Just like general dentists, look for pediatric specialists who are accredited by the American Dental Association (ADA).
Another benefit of pediatric dentists is that they are usually trained to handle children with disabilities or special physical conditions. In learning to provide dental care to kids, they are informed on the best ways to help children overcome fears associated with dental visits. Often, pediatric dental offices are decorated to make children feel at ease and many have technology to entertain kids like televisions, music, and games.
Your child’s pediatric dentist will spend time teaching proper dental hygiene techniques, so that good home care can be maintained. Kids will learn about brushing, flossing, proper eating tips, diet guidelines, and other important aspects of good oral health. All of these things, along with regular dental checkups, will go a long way in keeping your child’s mouth healthy.
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Many parents don’t realize the link between dental health and total body health. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood illness in America. In fact, 25 percent of children ages two to five and 50 percent of kids 12 to 15 are impacted by tooth decay.
Helping your kids develop good oral health habits can ensure that they enjoy strong, healthy smiles. Consider these tips:
Beginning when your child is just an infant, you can take proper care of their smiles. Wipe your baby’s gums with a moist cloth before bed. By age two, you can introduce a toothbrush with just water. Children three and older should brush with fluoride toothpaste.
Encourage a balanced diet
Make sure your kids eat lots of fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins. Limiting snacks between meals will also help protect teeth.
Take extra steps
Talk with your child’s dentist about dental sealants. These thin plastic coatings cover the pits and grooves in back teeth, which keeps food from getting trapped and creating a fertile ground for decay-causing bacteria. Your dentist may also suggest fluoride applications for added benefit.
Be a role model
If your children see that you spend time brushing and flossing your teeth, they will be more likely to follow suit. Explain that you only get one smile, so it’s important to take care of it.
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It’s sometimes difficult to understand why your child is nervous about going to the dentist, and can be frustrating to deal with the tears and arguments when it’s time for an appointment. Taking your child to a pediatric dentist may help. These specialists are trained in handling kids and their dental needs, and can help you through the process as well.
Pediatric dentistry is a specialty area in which dentists go through extra training related to the oral health needs of children. This not only includes medical procedures and treatments unique to kids, it also involves learning to relate to children and ways to ease their fears. Pediatric dentists treat children of all ages, and they work in offices that are equipped for children’s dentistry.
Simply by choosing a reputable pediatric dentist, chances are you are already taking a step in the right direction for your child. This type of dentist realizes the anxieties that children may have about checkups, and therefore works to address those fears and make your child more relaxed and comfortable in the dental office. This may involve an appealing environment targeted to kids, distraction techniques like televisions and video games, or simply explaining what’s happening every step of the way so that your child feels involved in the process. A pediatric dentist will not ignore your child’s feelings, but will strive to bring comfort at the same time as providing good dental care.
One of the goals of a pediatric dentist is to pique your child’s interest in taking care of their teeth, and develop a feeling of responsibility for practicing good dental hygiene. The dentist will spend time with your child, making sure skills are learned. This increases the chances that your child will have fewer dental problems in the future, and hopefully will also be more willing to have their teeth checked next time.
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