Most dental offices will offer a variety of specialties that extend beyond the standard practices that are expected. While most any dentist office will provide the generalized services of checkups, cleanings, xrays and fillings, more specialized areas of practice will involve additional certifications and education. Because specialized dentistry involves these additional aspects of study, not every office will offer everything that you might need as a patient, so the usual method of getting you the care you need in special circumstances is for the dentist to provide referrals to other offices better equipped to serve you. One of the most obvious examples of specialized dental care is children's dentistry, which is also known as pediatric dentistry. This genre involves the special considerations that must be taken in order to make a child's visit to the dentist one that is not traumatic, and the reduction of fear in children that will result in more successful cleanings, examinations and fillings if needed. Let's face it, the dentist is scary for children as they associate it with pain and discomfort, so understanding how to deal with children is a specialty that not every dentist will want to undertake.
Pediatric dentistry as a specialty is the extension of a traditional dental education and certification in order to provide an experience that is beneficial to patients who have not yet reached their teenage years or adulthood. In order to provide pediatric services, a dentist must continue their education to include a knowledge of child psychology and physiology, which gives them the understanding of how to modify their typical approach and practice so that it will be less traumatic to those who cannot understand it from an adult perspective yet. As an example, simply telling a child that they are going to feel a bit of pain as a numbing agent is delivered the way you would prepare an adult may not have the same outcome, and instead may cause un-necessary stress to the child. The office itself being presented in a clean and professional manner that is so important to adults may have the opposite effect on a child who would respond far better to bright colors, pictures, and a playful environment that appears more like a playground. By modifying the environment and the approach, a dentist trained to deal with children has a much better chance of successfully accomplishing the procedures that are necessary, without providing extra, un-necessary stress.
Children's dentistry also entails study of the unique aspects of a child's teeth and gums. The teeth that will be lost and replaced by the adult teeth later in development present special challenges for care to both dentists and parents alike, and pediatric study enables the dentist to provide a better understanding of the necessities of oral care that can be imparted on the parents. Most children do not like to brush and floss their teeth, and simple training techniques from a pediatric dentist on how to make the process fun can make all the difference. Children have special needs, and a children's dentist understands them.