Pediatricians like to use the phrase, “children are not just smaller adults.” They say this to emphasize that children have needs that are specific to their size and age. This also relates to pediatric dentistry. Let’s look at the differences.
Although there may be the rare occasion when a child will need some form of reconstructive dental restoration, it is logical to assume that children probably won’t go looking for a cosmetic procedure to enhance their smile or whiten their teeth. This kind of cosmetic dentistry is more for adults whose teeth have become stained or cracked and are in need of a new finish.
It takes time for plaque to turn to tartar and cause serious gum disease or bone loss, so children are obviously less likely to need periodontal treatments.
Dentures and implants are for adults who have lost teeth due to having had so many dental procedures performed over the years or whose natural teeth have run their course. All of the aforementioned adult manifestations are best left to the family dentist or when necessary to an oral surgeon.
Pediatric dentists on the other hand are better equipped to handle the dental issues that are predominate in children. Prevention and education are key in pediatric dentistry. The patients are young enough to be taught the importance of proper oral dental home care and their parents are more in tune to the significance of a diet low in sugar content.
Everything about pediatric dentistry is directed toward the goal of making a “dental home” for the patients. From the waiting room to the inner sanctum, offices are set up to impress the children and put them at ease in the surroundings. Personnel and associates are selected in large part for their ability to connect to children and respond to their specific needs in just the right way.
It takes at least two additional years of training to specialize and become a pediatric dentist. Dr. Lucinda Lewis of Dentist 4 Kidz in Aurora completed her pediatric residency at Harvard University. Call 303-367-1502 to make an appointment.