Kid Friendly DentistRichmond, TX
A kid-friendly dentist has three years of additional training focused on diagnosing and treating children. They have a deeper understanding of a child's developing teeth and the most effective way to keep children relaxed during dental appointments.
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends bringing your child in for their first dental checkup once their first tooth erupts or by their first birthday. A comprehensive examination is performed during the child's first appointment, and records are taken so the dentist can better assess the development of their teeth as other teeth emerge. Early visits to a pediatric dentist help familiarize children with the dental clinic, reducing the possibility of developing dental phobias later in life.
Why children need a kid-friendly dentist
Pediatric dentists have additional education that makes them better equipped to treat children. They understand how to explain things to children in a way that is fun and easy to understand. They are also trained to treat children with special needs like attention deficit disorder, cerebral palsy, and autism.
Some of the reasons why your child will be better off with a kid-friendly dentist include:
1. Child-friendly facilities
A kid-friendly dentist's clinic is designed around providing dental care to children. Their practices are typically painted with cool colors and decorations children will like. Toys are available to keep children occupied during their visit, and fun videos might be used to educate children about dental care.
A kid-friendly dentist even customizes the tools they treat their patients with to suit the smaller mouths of children. Their tools are typically designed to be less intimidating, so they do not scare children during their treatments. These little things make children feel more comfortable during their dental visits, leading to positive memories being created.
2. A dentist that understands children
All dentists are qualified to perform dental treatments on patients of all ages, but not all dentists are trained on children's behavior like pediatric dentists are. Kid-friendly dentists use tools like behavior modification to keep children relaxed during their appointments. They are experts at talking to children using language the child will understand.
Children's dentists typically explain what is planned for each treatment to make children more comfortable. They also use positive reinforcement to help build positive memories at the clinic. Children who visit a pediatric dentist regularly during their early years are less likely to develop significant dental issues later in life.
3. Better education on children's developing teeth
Pediatric dentists have additional training that gives them a better understanding of complex problems that can affect the development of a child's teeth. Their unique understanding of children's teeth helps them identify seemingly minor issues that can lead to significant problems later in life. For example, orthodontic issues can often be detected early on, even before all of a child's teeth have erupted. Early detection is crucial since orthodontic issues are typically easier to treat early, when a child's developing jaw and facial structures are more moldable than an adult's.
4. Provides kid-friendly preventative care
A pediatric dentist provides preventative dental care in fun ways children can enjoy. Preventative care is a massive part of pediatric dentistry since most dental issues can be prevented. Some of the preventative treatments provided by kid-friendly dentists include:
- Teeth cleanings: This is the foundation of preventative dentistry. It involves using a scaler to remove tartar and plaque from teeth. These substances contain bacteria that make acids that damage teeth. The bacteria can also make their way into gum tissues infecting them. The American Dental Association recommends getting teeth cleaned twice yearly to protect teeth against gum disease and tooth decay
- Fluoride treatments: Fluoride treatments are typically performed after teeth cleanings, and they protect teeth from decay for up to six months. Fluoride treatments can even reverse the early demineralization stage of tooth decay. Pediatric dentists typically use products with appealing flavors to perform fluoride treatments
- Dental sealants: These treatments are used to protect teeth in the back of the mouth from decay. The molars are the most challenging set of teeth to clean, and children often do not clean them well. Sealants are thin composite resins that are used to form a barrier that prevents acids made by oral bacteria from getting to teeth. It is a non-invasive procedure, and it can protect teeth from decay for up to five years
- Educating children and parents: Teaching children and their parents correct brushing techniques and good oral hygiene also helps prevent dental issues from developing in the children. Pediatric dentists make these educational sessions fun, so children actually take some things from them and put them into practice
5. Provides dental sedation
Kid-friendly dentists also provide dental sedatives for children who have difficulty staying still during their appointments, those who need to get a lot of work done, and those with special needs. Some of the sedatives a kid-friendly dentist might recommend include:
- Nitrous oxide: Popularly known as laughing gas, this is the most used sedative in dentistry. It comes with few to no side effects and is safe for patients of all ages. Laughing gas is a fast-acting gas that takes effect within a few minutes of being inhaled. It is typically delivered through a nose mask and keeps patients relaxed and happy during their appointments. The effects of laughing gas wear off within minutes once the nose mask stops delivering it
- Oral sedatives: Oral sedatives are typically recommended for children who get anxious when it is time to go to the clinic. These sedatives are typically taken an hour before the child's appointment. The child might become drowsy once its effects kick in, but they can be easily woken up
- IV sedation: This is a deeper level of sedation that is typically recommended if the child needs to get multiple treatments during the same appointment. It allows dentists to get more done in the same amount of time while keeping the child relaxed
Our kid-friendly dentist is here to help
Taking your child to a pediatric dentist starts them on the right path regarding their dental health. Call or visit our Richmond clinic to set up an appointment.
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