Setting up your child's first dental appointment can be confusing. You may wonder whether you should bring him to see a special pediatric dentist or just your regular practitioner. Here are four reasons why a pediatric practitioner just might be the ideal choice:
Specialization in Children's Teeth
Pediatric dentists have been specifically trained to treat children's developing teeth. They know the unique problems that children face, such as cavities and gum problems. They also understand the complexities of how teeth grow and develop and can keep an eye out for potential problems. Lastly, pediatric practitioners have experience dealing with frightened children and can help your child feel at ease and comfortable at the dentist.
Smaller Child-Friendly Equipment
While there's nothing wrong with using standard-sized dental equipment on children, it's nice that pediatric dental offices use smaller equipment specifically designed for a child's mouth. Additionally, many pediatric dentists help ease your child into dental exams by introducing one piece of equipment at a time. This can help children get used to the complex and often "scary-looking" equipment without overwhelming them.
Bright Décor and Toys
Specialized children's dental practices are decked out in brightly-colored décor, complete with toys and games in the waiting room, to help your child feel more at home. Many practices also play popular children's cartoons to distract your child during the exam. They hand out stickers or toys at the end of the appointment to help build up your child's level of comfort. Additionally, when your child sees other children having a positive dental experience, she can use this as a model to follow.
Focus on Preventative Care
Pediatric dentists also focus on prevention of dental problems to ensure lifetime of good dental health. Pediatric practitioners can give you advice and teach your child about developing healthy habits, like twice-a-day brushing and flossing. A pediatric dentist will also have the latest information on preventative treatments (such as topical fluoride treatments) as they pertain specifically to children.
Choose a pediatric dentist for specialized care for your child. If you need help to find a great pediatric practice, check out this search tool from the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry.
Learn more about pediatric dental care in in the Colgate Oral Care resources.
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