Pediatric dentists begin by completing dental school and then continue their education with several years of additional specialized training. During her training in pediatric dentistry, Dr. Childers gained extensive knowledge and experience in treating young children, children with special healthcare needs, and adolescents. Pediatric dentists enjoy working with children and are able to apply their expertise in childhood development and behavior to make your child more comfortable.
“First visit by your first birthday” is the general rule. To prevent dental issues, your child should see a pediatric dentist soon after their first tooth appears, usually between 6 and 12 months of age.
The best way to prepare for your child’s first visit is to keep a positive attitude. Children pick up on adults’ fear and anxiety and if you make negative comments about the dentist you can be sure that your child will fear an unpleasant experience and act accordingly. Start by showing your child the pictures of the office and staff on the website so that they know who and what to expect when they walk into our office. Let your child know that their dental health is important and that our office is here to keep their smile healthy. Avoid using words like ‘drill’, ‘shot’, ‘pull’, or any other terminology that may strike fear in your child’s mind. We use kid-friendly terminology and always take the time to explain procedures in a fun and easy way for children to understand. Leave the details up to us and remember that Dr. Childers is specially trained to handle fears and anxiety, and she and her staff excel at putting children at ease during treatment.
Baby teeth are seriously underrated! Not only do they help your child to speak, smile, and chew properly, they also reserve space in the jaw for permanent teeth. If baby teeth are lost too soon, (the back molars often stay with your child until they are 10-12 years old!) then space for the permanent teeth is lost which can result in crooked or misplaced permanent teeth. It’s also important to note that baby teeth with large cavities can cause the same infections that permanent teeth with large cavities do which can affect your child’s overall health.
Dental radiographs (known commonly as x-rays) are routine and necessary for your child to receive the highest standard of dental care. We limit radiation exposure for children by using lead aprons with thyroid collars and digital radiography, which emits 80% less radiation than traditional x-ray machines. Cavities, missing or extra teeth, and pathology/diseases can go undetected without the use of dental radiographs.
We can’t wait to get started on your smile!