Pediatric Dentistry

What is a Pediatric Dentist and Why are They the Best Choice for My Little One?

By September 9, 2019 September 19th, 2019 No Comments


We all want the very best for our kids — and helping them look and feel their best starts by supporting their health. Kids are constantly growing and changing every day. As their bodies continue to develop, they have different needs than adults, especially when it comes to their teeth. They have baby teeth to grow (and lose), adult teeth to develop and oral health habits to learn. It’s important to start children’s dental care from an early age with someone who knows exactly what young mouths need.

As you prepare to set up your child’s first dentist appointment, you probably have a lot of questions about what’s best for your little one. At Palmetto Smiles, our specially trained doctors are experts in little mouths and know how to support your child’s development. We believe pediatric dentists provide the best oral health care for kids. Here’s why.

What is a Pediatric Dentist?

Pediatric dentists are basically the pediatricians of the dentistry world. They are specially trained to treat younger patients all the way from infancy through their adolescent years. Since developing mouths require the gentlest of care, pediatric dentists must complete two to three years of additional training after graduating from dental school. This specialized training equips pediatric dentists to handle children’s unique dental needs, including emergencies and those with special needs.

So what exactly does a pediatric dentist do? Everything your dentist does for you and so much more! Just like a regular dentist performs oral health exams, provides oral hygiene education and more, a pediatric dentist is a total dental provider for kids. In addition to regular cleanings, exams and oral health recommendations, a pediatric dentist can provide the following:

  • Tips to correct oral health habits (such as pacifier use and thumb-sucking)
  • Nutrition and diet recommendations
  • Early assessment for future orthodontic needs (such as braces)
  • Cavity repairs including sedation and hospital dentistry for anxious patients
  • Early diagnosis of oral conditions that are associated with larger health concerns (such as diabetes, asthma and more)
  • Repair for dental injuries
  • Management of gum diseases
  • Preventive dentistry (such as fluoride treatments)

Pediatric dentists are experts in dental care for children and youth. They know how kids’ mouths develop and change over time, so they can help you plan ahead for your child’s dental needs. By working with a pediatric dentist, your children will develop healthy habits from an early age, preventing further dental conditions in the future.

Why Should My Child See a Pediatric Dentist?

So why should you take your child to a pediatric dentist instead of a regular dentist? Besides the fact that they have special, child-friendly training, here are a few more reasons to choose a pediatric dentist for your kids:

They Speak “Kid”: Pediatric dentists are experts in treating children — and we don’t just mean their teeth. They have the ability to make your child feel at ease, even in the unfamiliar (and often “scary”) dentist chair. They can calm your child down if they’re nervous and have secret ways to get your kids excited about their oral health.

They Focus on Preventive Dentistry: It’s one thing to treat problems that already exist, but it takes special care to prevent problems from occurring in the first place. Pediatric dentists focus on preventive dentistry, which refers to the steps you can take to avoid oral health problems like cavities, gum disease, enamel decay and more. Starting dental care early will help set your kids up for good oral health for life.

Their Offices are Child-Friendly: Regular dental offices are often very clinical, which isn’t very inviting for youngsters who might be anxious about visiting the dentist. Offices like our Lexington pediatric dentistry office, however, are warm and welcoming for even the youngest patients. Our goal is to make your kids excited about coming to the dentist!

They Use Child-Sized Equipment: It goes without saying that a child’s mouth is much smaller than an adult’s. So, little mouths require much smaller equipment. While standard-sized dental tools are perfectly safe to use on kids, using kid-sized versions allows pediatric dentists to slowly introduce your child to dental care without overwhelming them.

Dental appointments can be a big deal for kids but they don’t have to be scary. A pediatric dentist has the expertise not only to treat your child’s developing teeth, but to keep them calm, happy and comfortable throughout the experience. Ready to book your child in with your Lexington pediatric dentist? Call Palmetto Smiles to request an appointment!

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