Did you know that you’re supposed to bring your child to the dentist before their first birthday or when their first tooth comes in? Even if your baby only has one tooth, it’s time to start taking care of it!
You have an important decision to make. Will you take your child to visit a dentist, or will you choose a pediatric dentist?
We’re here to discuss why choosing a pediatric dentist for your child is the best option. Read on to learn more.
Table of Contents
- 1. They Understand Child-Specific Problems
- 2. Your Child Will Be More Comfortable
- 3. They Can Teach First-Time Parents About Oral Health
- 4. The Waiting Rooms Are Fun
- 5. They Break Things Down Into Simple Concepts
- 6. They’re Great for Children With Special Needs
- 7. They Can Refer You to Orthodontists or Specialists
- 8. They Have Smaller Tools
- Visit Your Local Pediatric Dentist
1. They Understand Child-Specific Problems
Did you know that pediatric dentists get special training that standard dentists don’t? That’s right; pediatric dentistry is a specialized field. When you find a dentist specializing in children’s teeth, you know that your child is in good hands.
Pediatric dentists go through two to three years of extra training and education, so they know how to treat tiny infants and teenagers alike. From the time your child grows their first tooth, the pediatric dentist will be there to keep it clean and healthy.
Pediatric dentists know all about dealing with things like thumb-sucking, teething woes, and baby teeth falling out. General dentists may also know these things. However, they may not know the best and most up-to-date practices because they haven’t received extra training.
2. Your Child Will Be More Comfortable
If you want to ensure that your child doesn’t grow up with dental anxiety, a pediatric dentist is your best option.
Pediatric dentists have an excellent bedside manner. They can keep your child cheerful and happy even if they’re giving them some bad news about their teeth. Your child won’t ever be afraid to go to the dentist.
It’s essential to start taking your child to the dentist as early as possible if you want this to be effective. Children who continue to see their pediatric dentist from the time they’re infants through their teenage years won’t feel as uncomfortable during appointments.
If possible, stay with the same pediatric dentist.
3. They Can Teach First-Time Parents About Oral Health
You’ve been taking care of your oral health for decades. Now that you have a child, you need to re-learn how—starting from scratch. A pediatric dentist can help.
When you bring your infant in for the first time, the best dentist will teach you how to gently brush your child’s teeth and gums to keep them safe and healthy. Then, as your child grows, they’ll give you advice about how to teach them to brush their teeth!
They’ll tell you all about the best products to use, apps that can help, the foods that your child should avoid, and potential problems to look for regarding your child’s oral health.
4. The Waiting Rooms Are Fun
Dentists that focus on adults tend to have dull waiting rooms. There’s nothing wrong with this, but it’s not a fun or comfortable environment for children. Even a few old children’s books won’t make the standard waiting room less clinical.
A pediatric dentist’s office is bright and exciting; it draws children in. They may have colorful murals on the walls, tubs full of games and books, and even cartoon shows or movies.
Being in a fun environment will help children push past their dental fears. They may even be excited to visit their specialist dentist!
5. They Break Things Down Into Simple Concepts
When you visit a pediatric dentist, they’ll talk to your child about their oral health. Many parents think that children aren’t able to understand their teeth, but this isn’t true. They just need the right person to explain things to them.
Dentists who don’t focus on pediatric dentistry may only talk to the parents because they can explain more complex concepts. They may struggle to break things down for younger patients.
Pediatric dentists know how to break down those concepts so that children can understand them on some level.
6. They’re Great for Children With Special Needs
Even if you’ve had success with other children visiting general or family dentists, a pediatric dentist is your best choice if you have a child with special needs.
Special needs can include autism, ADHD, anxiety, and any other type of physical or mental condition that impacts your child. These children often need specialized care.
Pediatric dentists can comfort these children, and many of them use sedation dentistry to make the process faster and easier. Some pediatric dentists can even complete all of your child’s dental work in one session using nitrous oxide (laughing gas), ensuring your child is comfortable.
7. They Can Refer You to Orthodontists or Specialists
So what if your child needs something that your dentist can’t provide? Any good pediatric dentist will be able to refer you to other dental professionals in the event of a problem.
Pediatric dentists can spot oral health problems that other specialists can take care of. For example, they can tell if a child is likely to need braces in the future so that they can refer you to the perfect child-friendly orthodontist.
If your child needs their wisdom teeth removed, which may appear in the teen years, an excellent pediatric dentist will refer you to an oral surgeon if they can’t handle the problem on-site.
8. They Have Smaller Tools
Let’s face it: dental tools are scary! Those hooks, drills, and suction devices might seem threatening to even the bravest children, and the ones that standard dentists use may be too large for your child’s comfort.
Pediatric dentists keep smaller tools in their offices to work on even the tiniest mouths. They can also explain those tools to children, so they’re no longer afraid of them.
General and family dentists may also stock those tools, but you can’t be sure.
Visit Your Local Pediatric Dentist
When you choose a pediatric dentist for your child, you’re setting them up for a lifetime of excellent oral health. Find the best dentist for your child to keep their smiles healthy and clean!
For more helpful articles about health and more, visit the rest of our site.