Tooth decay is one of the most common oral health issues experienced by children. A pediatric dentist can help your child develop a proper oral hygiene routine that may prevent serious consequences, such as problems with speaking, eating, learning, and playing.According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 20% of children have a decayed…
How a Pediatric Dentist Differs From a General Dentist
There are many differences between a pediatric dentist and a general dentist. Many parents do not realize that a pediatric dentist is not the same as a general dentist. Your children have dental needs that adults do not have. You know how important it is to get your child to the dentist. But you might not know if you need a dentist especially for your children. Read on to learn about how a pediatric dentist differs from a general dentist.
General dentists receive extensive training in dentistry before beginning to practice. But most pediatric dentists have more training in specialized courses. Pediatric dentists spend up to two extra years learning about psychology and how to make young patients comfortable. Pediatric dentists also learn to work with children with special needs and practice with smaller tools. Children do not respond to dentists the same way adults do. Pediatric dentists learn how to help children who may struggle to sit still or might have a lot of anxiety.
Caring for children’s mouths
All dentists receive some training in working with both children and adults. General dentists may see some children. However, the majority of the patients that pediatric dentists see are children. These dentists become practiced in working in smaller mouths. Pediatric dentists are also more familiar with the therapies specific to children.
The office atmosphere
Brightly colored pediatric dentist offices often feature fun activities for waiting children. These offices also use smaller furniture that feels more comfortable for younger patients. General dentists have offices and furniture geared toward adult patients. General dentist offices can accommodate children. But pediatric dentist offices focus on creating a fun and inviting place that eases anxiety.
A preference for prevention
Children are more likely to have issues with tooth decay. Baby teeth have thinner enamel. Children are also still learning how to brush and floss consistently. Pediatric dentists are familiar with the types of fillings that most benefit children. Pediatric dentists teach patients in terms that children can understand. Dentists prefer to use certain treatments with children, including fluoride treatments and sealants.
One thing at a time
While adults do not usually want to know the names of each dental tool, children often do. A pediatric dentist knows that a person using strange tools might seem scary. The dentist may show the child each dental tool and describe what it does before performing any procedure. This might seem silly to an adult but can create a sense of trust between the dentist and the child.
Choosing the right pediatric dentist
Whether your child is a pro at the dentist’s office or has fears, choosing the right dentist is key. A pediatric dentist can create a more comfortable atmosphere for your child. You will also appreciate that pediatric dentists train to handle even complicated or extreme dental cases. This training prepares the pediatric dentist for whatever your child’s needs are.
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