Parent Resources

General Topics

What is a Pediatric Dentist? How are they different from general dentist?
Why are the Primary Teeth so Important?
How can I prepare my child for the dental visit?
What is dental radiographs (X-rays)?


What is a Pediatric Dentist?  How are they different from general dentist?

A pediatric dentist focuses on oral health and the unique needs of young people. They limit their practice to exclusively treating children. There are many significant differences between an adult’s and a child’s anatomy, physiology and psychology. A pediatric dentist has the special oral care knowledge required to meet the dental needs of infants, children and adolescents, as well as special needs patients.

After completing four years of dental school, two to three additional years of training are required to become a pediatric dentist. This specialized program prepares pediatric dentists to handle the unique needs of infants, children, adolescents and special needs patients.

At Children’s Oral Care Centre:

  • We are concerned about your child’s total health care as good oral health is integral to a person’s long-term health.
  • Our goal is to provide you the tools to implement preventive dental health care habits that keep your child(ren) free from dental/oral diseases.
  • We focus on prevention, early detection and treatment of dental diseases.
  • We keep current on the latest advances in dentistry for children.
  • We aim to help all children feel good about visiting the dentist and teach them how to care for their teeth.
  • Your child’s comfort is our main concern, which is reflected by our special office design and our communication style. We have various resources through this website dedicated to learning about children’s oral health and their dental visit. Please check them out.

 

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Why are the Primary Teeth so Important?

Keeping baby teeth healthy is important because:

  • Some of these teeth may remain in the mouth until your child(ren) are 12 or 13 years old.
  • They help children chew properly and speak clearly.
  • They save space for the developing adult teeth under the gum so when it’s time for them to erupt, they will appear in the proper positions in the mouth.
  • Tooth decay in baby teeth can cause pain and possibly an infection, including an abscess.
  • Children with baby teeth decay may have problems eating, sleeping and focusing because of pain and may not grow and develop normally.
  • A child with visible decay may become self-conscious and not want to smile or laugh.

Why are the primary teeth so important?
The space of the premature lost primary tooth is closed. There is not enough room for the succeeding permanent tooth to eruption into its normal position.

When do adult teeth start coming in?

Eruption sequence of permanent teeth. It is important to keep your primary teeth healthy because some of the adult teeth do not erupt until 12 – 13 years old.

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How can I prepare my child for the dental visit?

  • Children pick up cues from your emotions so be as natural and relaxed as possible when telling your child about the dental appointment.
  • Tell your child that he/she will be going to a special place for children only and they’ll meet new people who want to help him/her to stay healthy.
  • Avoid phrases such as “It’s not going to hurt,””She’s not going to give you a needle,””You are getting your teeth pulled,” or “The dentist is going to drill your teeth,” which may sound graphic and scary for your child. We tactfully use child-friendly words and phrases.
  • If you’re unsure how to answer your child’s questions, simply tell him/her that you don’t know. Encourage your child to ask these questions when he/she arrives in the office.
  • If your child has a favorite toy or book, bring it along. Feel free to let us know if there is anything that we can do to help make your child at ease.
  • Please don’t be upset if your child cries during the visit. This is a normal coping mechanism for younger children to deal with the unknown. Please be prepared to let us talk to your child while you observe quietly. Too many people talking at the same time will confuse the child and increase anxiety.

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Dental Radiographs (X-rays)

Radiographs (x-rays) are vital for a complete examination of your child. There are many “hidden” problems that cannot be detected by a visual exam, including cavities between the teeth, disease of the nerves and roots of the teeth and missing teeth. Radiographs allow the dentist to diagnose these problems and treat them accordingly.

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends radiographs and an examination every six months for children with high decay risk. On average, radiographs can be obtained every year for children that have moderate and low decay risk. Our digital radiograph system at the office minimizes radiation exposure to your children. We have protective devices in place and the exposure to radiation is negligible. In fact, the dental radiographs themselves represent a far smaller risk than the undetected and untreated dental problems.

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