If you have a dentist you love and have been seeing for years, taking your young child to them instead of a pediatric dentist might sound like the perfect plan. All dentists go through the same four years of dental school, but what they do afterward is what really shapes their practice. Instead of working on adult patients right out of dental school, pediatric dentists receive two years of specialized training by working with infants, children, and teens during their residency. With extra experience and training working with developing mouths, pediatric dentists have more to offer children and their parents than other dentists, including the following services.

Managing A Mouthful Of Changes

As children grow, they experience many physical changes, and many of those changes occur in and around the mouth. Toothless infants begin teething before they are even a year old, and then children lose their hard-earned teeth around six years later. With so many physical changes happening to children's teeth, gums, and jaws, only dentists with specialized training have the expertise needed to meet a child's dental needs. Pediatric dentists know what a healthy mouth looks like at every stage of development, so they can warn parents about problems like pediatric periodontal disease and tooth defects early. With the right care from the start, you can ensure that your child's oral health is right on track.

Correcting Unhelpful Behaviors Early

Pediatric dentists offer services beyond dental treatments. In order to ensure their patients have the best chance at oral health in adulthood, these dentists offer habit counseling to parents and children. By looking at a child's teeth every six months, a pediatric dentist can tell how well they have been taken care of. They will offer advice to parents accordingly. Some common advice includes limiting sugary snacks and drinks to mealtimes, brushing your teeth with your child twice per day, and paying close attention to tooth pain. By creating good dental care habits from the start, you can put your child on the path of good dental health in adulthood.

Supporting Uncomfortable Little Patients

Children shouldn't be expected to behave like small adults, and dental offices can scare them or make them uncomfortable. If your child is afraid of the dentist, a pediatric dentist can help them get through a dental appointment with less fear and stress. These dentists know how to communicate with scared children and put them at ease by explaining everything they do in child-friendly terms. They also have offices that are sized and decorated for children, creating a comfortable atmosphere. By taking your child to a pediatric dental clinic, you can help them develop positive associations with going to the dentist and maintaining their dental health.

To learn more about pediatric dentistry, contact children's dentists in your area.