Pediatric dentistry is an area of dentistry that focuses on the oral health of children. Starting good dental hygiene habits early in life is important. As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states, more than 50% of children under the age of nine have had at least one cavity in their baby teeth, and…
What Services Are Provided by a Pediatric Dentist?
A pediatric dentist is a dental specialist who works with children from infancy through adolescence. A pediatric dentist is both an educator and a practitioner; therefore, they receive additional training outside of dentistry school to strengthen their knowledge of children’s emotional and developmental needs. They also receive child psychology training, allowing them to connect with youngsters more effectively.
Services offered by a pediatric dentist
Pediatric dentists provide all of the necessary examinations and treatments for children’s dental health. Some of the most common services they provide include:
There is no denying that a child’s oral health is important to their complete well-being. Routine checkups usually include a professional cleaning to eliminate the unhealthy accumulation of tartar and plaque on the teeth. Still, the examination is undoubtedly an essential aspect of the visit to a pediatric dentist. The check-up ensures that the child’s teeth and gums are developing as they should and allows the dentist to treat any oral issues before they worsen.
Once a year, children and teenagers should get dental x-rays to detect any abnormalities lying underneath the surface of their teeth and gums. X-rays reveal problems like cavities between the teeth, which are not visible to the naked eye. As a child’s permanent teeth erupt, x-rays can detect issues with alignment and discover impacted teeth before they become a problem. If a child’s pediatric dentist sees any developmental issues, they may require more than one x-ray each year.
The most frequent dental problems in children are cavities and tooth decay. Up to 20 percent of children aged five to 11 have one or more decaying teeth left untreated, causing discomfort and illness. Filling such cavities can restore normal function to the teeth, but fillings are not always enjoyable. A pediatric dentist can place fillings while making the process comfortable for the child.
When it comes to oral health, prevention is always the best way to go. Sealants are an excellent method to prevent cavities from developing in the first place, and they are also quick and easy to apply. A sealant is a thin coating that is placed over the chewing surface of teeth. The material hardens almost instantly after application. According to the Centers for Disease Control, sealants on molars can prevent up to 80% of cavities. The procedure generally takes only a few minutes and does not involve any numbing or drilling.
Another excellent preventive strategy offered by pediatric dentists is fluoride varnish. Fluoride varnish is applied to the top and sides of each tooth using a tiny brush, which is another quick and painless process. The fluoride will remineralize the enamel and strengthen it against the effects of bacteria and plaque.
Although a pediatric dentist provides most of the treatments provided by a regular dentist, their services are specially tailored to meet children’s oral health needs. Pediatric dentists are not just concerned with long-term dental health and maintenance, but they also work hard to help children form good oral habits.
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