Pediatric dentistry caters to the dental needs of children from infancy until their teenage years. We are all well aware that children are not always very obedient when it comes to caring for their teeth. They often forget to brush their teeth (which is why we as parents need to remind them constantly to do so), and many kids fear to go to their dentists.
Only seasoned pediatric dentists know how to make children comfortable in the dental chair. They also know how to examine properly and perform dental treatments in children. Pediatric dentists are more gentle and patient in checking children’s teeth as these are not fully developed, and are softer compared to adult teeth.
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends that a child should be taken to the dentist when their first tooth has emerged or during the child’s first six months of infancy until the first birthday. By the age of 6 or 7, children start to lose their primary teeth and are gradually replaced by permanent teeth. The earlier the child's dental needs are addressed, the better the care and the previous dentists can also detect any problems. Early treatment can also help prevent the need for costly corrective procedures later on.
Pediatric dentistry covers a broad range of oral health including:
- Oral examination with assessment of potential dental caries
- Repair tooth cavities and possible tooth decays
- Habit forming such as eliminating the use of thumb sucking
- Reinforcing the importance of oral hygiene and preventive oral care such as general cleaning
- Early detection of possible need for orthodontics to those with misaligned teeth
- Diagnosis of certain oral conditions that may be symptoms of diseases or health defects
- Addressing dental injuries such as fractured and displaced teeth
Parents must be able to guide their children properly in following dentist's instructions for proper oral care. During a consultation with the child’s dentist, the parents are also educated about preventive home care that they should reinforce at home. This includes regular and proper brushing, use of dental floss (which is the least practiced by most of us), and the use of fluoride.
You can consult your child’s pediatrician to help you find a skilled pediatric dentist in your vicinity. You can also call our office at (707) 257-2400 as we have well trained and gentle pediatric dentists who can examine and help maintain the health of your child’s teeth. Our dental office is located at Napa Valley Dental Group at 21 19 Jefferson St. Napa, CA 94559.