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 Old is Too Old to Visit a Pediatric Dentist?
A Pediatric Dentist is a dentist who has specialized training focused on dealing with younger patients. They are typically the best option for young children and teenagers since they are more knowledgeable about the growth patterns of children's teeth and dental issues that are specific to kids. Kids' dentists are also trained on how to deal with children with special needs and nervous children who are not particularly fond of getting work done on their teeth. It is also their job to educate parents on how to properly take care of their child's teeth.
Why choose a pediatric dentist in the first place?
The benefits of going to a pediatric dentist go beyond the additional training these specialists have. They provide an experience that is completely different from what one would find at a general dentist's clinic. The equipment at a pediatric dental clinic is geared specifically for children. Standard dental equipment can be too big or too scary-looking for some children. Everything is designed to be less threatening at the pediatric dentist's clinic. This is done to make the child feel more comfortable.
The walls are painted with fun, bright colors, children's programs are constantly playing and the waiting rooms are littered with all the coolest toys available. This makes a visit to the dental clinic feel more like a fun adventure. The end result is a child who is relaxed and associates dentists with positive thoughts. The assistants in a pediatric dental clinic also have lots of experience dealing with young children. They know exactly what to say to relax each child and get them ready for their appointment.
Are teenagers too old for pediatric dentists?
Most parents who have teenagers often find themselves wondering if their child still needs a kid's dentist. The answer to that question is yes. While a teenager is no longer a child, their permanent teeth are still in the early stages. Most people do not have all of their permanent teeth until around the age of 21.
Parents with teenagers should continue taking their child to a pediatric dentist until all of their permanent teeth have erupted. It is better to stay with the kid's dentist until then since they already have a relationship with the child. Remember, a pediatric dentist is equipped to perform all the treatments performed by general dentists. They just have two years of additional training. If the child develops a dental issue that requires the services of a specialist, the dentist will provide a referral.
When is the right time to move on to a general dentist?
Some parents opt to switch to a general dentist when the child reaches the age of 18 and legally becomes an adult, but it is okay to keep seeing a kids' dentists during their college years. It often comes down to the child's individual needs, their dental health and whether they are ready to move on to a general dentist.
Not sure if your child is ready to move on from the pediatric dentist? Set up a consultation with one of our dentists to learn more about making the transition.
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Pediatric Dentist.
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