What Is a Pediatric Dentist?

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A pediatric dentist is a dental professional specializing in the oral care of infants (including newborns), young children, adolescents, and teenagers. Pediatric dentists provide a range of treatments specific to these young patients ‘ dental needs. Read on to learn more about what you can expect when visiting a pediatric dentist in Los Angeles, CA.

What Do Pediatric Dentists Do?

In the traditional sense (think back to when you were a kid!), pediatric dentistry is concerned with the development of a child’s teeth, gums, tongue, oral tissues, jaw, and airway. Yet, today’s pediatric dentist is really a comprehensive health specialist who considers oral health in the broad context of “whole body” health and wellness. Of course, your kid’s dental specialist will provide traditional preventive dental care such as oral examinations, prophylaxis (teeth cleanings), cavity prevention and fillings, and various types of ” early interceptive” treatments, including the use of oral appliances to protect children’s teeth from damage and prevent later developmental problems.

Pediatric dentists also educate new parents and children on good oral hygiene habits, provide advice on proper nutrition for strong and healthy teeth, and, when necessary, handle emergency care and other needs as well. Yet, today’s pediatric dentists do so much more! They consult on proper development and emergent oral health issues in newborns. They can help to ensure proper breastfeeding, working in concert with lactation consultants. They can diagnose and treat tissue constrictions, such as tongue ties and lip ties, that may otherwise impede optimal oral-facial development, breathing, and speech. They can implement early interceptive treatment plans to facilitate proper orthodontic development. They can help to diagnose and treat airway issues that may impair healthful breathing and sleep.

To put it simply, today’s pediatric dentist is a comprehensive oral health and wellness specialist and an important member of the multi-disciplinary pediatric care team.