Finding The Right Dental Care For Children
While it’s not uncommon to see even the most hardened man avoid going to the dentist out of fear, the anxiety tends to be more pronounced in children. This makes it especially important to find dental care for children that is administered in a warm, friendly and compassionate environment, from providers who are experienced with the specific physical and emotional needs of little ones.
What Is A Pediatric Dentist?
While it’s true that a general dentist is capable of handling your child’s dental needs, a pediatric dentist is trained to use specific techniques that can make a child more comfortable during treatment.
To become a board certified pediatric dentist, a 2-3 year residency in pediatric dentistry is required beyond basic dental school. This is where a dentist will learn the specialized modalities used with children, and is also how he or she becomes certified to administer certain medications and use in-office sedation on children.
Beyond that, the effectiveness of a good pediatric dentist comes down to their demeanor, how they communicate with children, and the level of trust they achieve with their young patients.
What To Look For In A Pediatric Dentist
When you’re searching for dental care for children, there are a few things to know and ask about. The measures a potential pediatric dentist takes to make your child feel safe and comfortable are very important, especially to your child!
- Whether They Use The Tell-Show-Do Method For Procedures. For example, if the dentist wants to examine a child’s teeth, they should tell the child what they are going to do and show them the tools used and how they will look in their mouth, before actually doing those things. This helps a child know what to expect and establishes trust.
- Distractions. TVs playing cartoons on the ceiling, headphones, and cheerful colors and pictures, can all help a child feel more at ease than the sterile environment of exam rooms for adults.
- Restraining Devices. You do NOT want them! Forcing a child to submit to the dentist can be traumatic and create a life-long fear of dental procedures. This is why it’s important to start taking your child to the dentist very young so that they get comfortable with the basic idea of a doctor working inside their mouth.
- Medication And Sedation. For children who are severely anxious, a small amount of nitrous (laughing gas) can be administered to help them relax. When a filling or other restorative work is necessary, a good pediatric dentist will use a strong topical anesthetic to completely numb the injection site, along with a buffered anesthetic solution that does not cause a burning sensation when injected.
- Whether They Use The Gate Control Theory Of Pain. In short, a pressure or vibration is applied at the same time as anesthetic injections. For many patients, young and old, this effectively blocks pain signals from reaching the brain and the injection is virtually imperceptible.
Bauer Dentistry Serves Your Entire Family Under One Roof
Bauer Dentistry is proud to be able to serve your entire family’s dental needs, starting at age 1! Our board-certified pediatric dentist, Dr. Mark White is loved by his young patients, and he goes out of his way to ensure total comfort and safety of each child.