Some people make the mistake of not realizing that there are some significant differences between general and pediatric dentists. Taking children to a dentist specially trained to meet the needs of kids oral health can be very beneficial. These dentists not only have extensive training and experience in children’s oral health, pediatric dentists also ensure children have a good experience and develop lifelong positive attitudes toward obtaining dental care.
Pediatric dentists receive the same education as general dentists, but then they undergo an extra two to three years of training and experience in treating the unique needs of children’s oral health. This includes a residency program where the pediatric dentist works with infants, children, teens, and special needs children. Their training involves learning to manage children’s behavior during the dental visit, sedation techniques, teaching oral hygiene, and learning about the growth and development of kids’ oral systems. Pediatric dentists learn to diagnose problems, correct issues, and provide preventative care.
Children have unique issues and therefore require treatments that apply to them. Pediatric dentists have the ability to identify risks that children may have from their parents, diet, and habits like pacifier use or thumb-sucking. A typical dentist appointment for a child might include examination, teeth cleaning, fluoride treatments, as well as diagnosis and correction of cavities, broken teeth, or other defects. Pediatric dentists also watch for tooth alignment problem and bite issues, and are able to monitor and treat oral problems related to diseases like diabetes or gum disease.