Pediatric Dental Clinic for kids - How is it different from regular dentistry?
Pediatric Dental Clinic for kids – How is it different from regular dentistry? Practices lead by pedodontists, using special equipment.
What makes a pediatric dental practice unique & different from a usual dental practice?
Many factors such as child-friendly ambiance, friendly staff & experienced pedodontists (dental child specialists) are some factors that lie in its core competencies!
A Pediatric dental clinic mainly focuses on preventing dental issues in kids. Treating children & teenagers with dental & oral diseases is also their main priority.
Kids usually get their milk teeth till six to seven months of age. Pediatric dentists also have the necessary instruments & equipment to conduct the necessary dental check-ups and work on your child’s teeth, gums & oral cavity during their growing years till the age of 16.
A pediatric dental clinic emphasizes the correct methodologies involved in dental care for kids to prevent any possible issues such as early childhood caries. Their main focus is to avoid a lifetime of dental complications or pain wich your child can face if taken care of at the right age.
Early childhood caries is very common in children these days due to the modern lifestyle & diet that has a lot of processed food. As the old saying says “It’s better to nip it off the bud when you first see a small problem”!
1. A Pediatric dental clinic emphasises child-friendly ambiance
The main focus of a pediatric dental child-friendly clinic’s interior design should have a hospital free atmosphere. Space should not induce any negative emotions & make your kids first visit to the pediatric dentist as pleasant as possible!
The waiting area usually has a warm child-friendly environment with a kid’s play area with a restroom and vibrantly designed walls with art. The restroom should be hygienic with a potty for kids, extra diapers, sweat pads & nappies. Colors such as blue, orange & coral with natural wood give a very warm feeling.
The floorplan should be designed in such a way with clear pathways making the dental consultation process quick & comfortable for your child.
The pediatric dental rooms have to have complete privacy without the view of other treatment rooms making the child calm & comfortable on the dental chair. The pediatric dental chair should face a wall with vibrant & captivating wall art.
The waiting area is designed to accommodate a maximum of two patients at a time and is fitted out with a reception and a small wardrobe.
The waiting area should have a television with some child-friendly content such as cartoons or discovery kids.
2. A Pediatric dental clinic has special dental equipment for kids
Many pediatric dental clinics have special equipment for kids, such as a pediatric dental chair or a regular dental chair with a pediatric seat over it.
Some commonly used pediatric dental equipment is a kids dental clinic are –
Papoose boards –
These are required many times during pediatric medical or dental treatments. They hold the child in a stable position with limited movement to avoid any lacerations from sharp dental instruments or injections.
Bite blocks –
These are soft & made of rubber or silicon and are kept between the lower & upper teeth usually in uncooperative kids. This prevents the child from biting the pedodontist’s hand or their own soft tissues such as the tongue & cheeks during the dental treatment as oral health protocol.
Pediatric dental seat –
These are placed over the chair & look similar to a baby seat in a car. They are ergonomically comfortable for children and have a seat belt to stabilize the kid during dental treatment.
Pediatric dental chair –
These chairs for pediatric dentistry have a child-friendly design, looking like an animal such as a dinosaur or a frog. This prevents the child from anxiety during dental treatment thanks to the unique design of these chairs. They also have a TV attached with cartoons to distract the child during dental treatment! They go a long way in making dentistry fun for kids.
VR Headsets –
They are given to the kids in many pedodontic dental practices by the pediatric dentists so that they don’t get apprehensive by seeing the sharp instruments around them.
These are pediatric dental restraints that immobilize the child’s arms. They are only given to highly uncooperative kids to avoid any unforeseen injury during the dental treatment to themselves or the pedodontics team.
3. The pediatric dentists work with special dental instruments for kids
Pediatric dentists use special instruments for kids. They are usually colourful smaller in size & comfortable for the child.
A few commonly used pedodontic instruments are
Mini head hand piece – These are the instruments used for dental fillings. They are smaller for kids compared to a hand piece used for adults. They also make lesser noise to keep the child comfortable during the treatment.
Painless anaesthesia techniques – Flavoured topical anaesthetic gel should be applied for kids before using the injection. This numbs the area so that the child doesn’t feel the prick. An insulin syringe which is smaller in size is used, these are more comfortable for children compared to a regular syringe.
Early childhood dental braces – Orthodontists in a pediatric dental clinic are trained in pediatric orthodontics & interceptive care. The main aim of Orthodontic care at Little Pearls is to diagnose & prevent malocclusions in kids at an early age. Orthodontists also recommend interceptive or preventive Orthodontic care when a malocclusion such as crooked teeth is diagnosed by a Pedodontist. Invisalign first is also one of the latest removable clear aligner for kids who don’t prefer braces.
The other instruments such as mouth mirrors, used by dental professionals in pediatric dental clinics differ from the adult dental instruments.
4. The pediatric dental practice trains their staff to be child friendly
The dental staff surrounding the kid in a pediatric dental clinic is trained to be friendly with a sense of humor to make the child feel comfortable. They are also trained to handle uncooperative kids on a dental chair such as distracting them with toys & audiovisual content. Our dental care system for children also includes dentistry for special kids with conditions such as autism.
They usually don’t wear white coats to avoid any hospital induced fear in a child.
5. A different code of conduct is followed to keep your child comfortable
This is a form of speech used by the pedodontists in a pediatric dental clinic to avoid suggesting something unpleasant in front of the kid. A word or a phrase with something like injections scares the kid when the pediatric dentist speaks to the dental assistant. For example, a syringe is called a water gun & a topical anesthetic gel is called a strawberry gel. This makes the auditory experience more pleasant & comfortable for the child! This technique is also used by Orthodontists while bonding early childhood braces.
Tell show do technique
This technique is used by pediatric dentists to reduce anxiety in a child. This technique involves explaining the procedure to the child in an understandable way, followed by showing the instrument to the child so that it is perceived by the child as non-threatening. If the instrument is not sharp, it is given to the child who can use it on a dental model till they get comfortable with it.
This is a form of behaviour management to instill a positive attitude towards dental treatment in a child. Kids who see pediatric dental experiences positively are expected to be calmer during the dental procedure.
If the first dental visit heads towards a negative experience it might stay in the child’s subconscious mind for a lifetime. Grabbing the attention of the child, so that the pediatric dentists can communicate & hand over mouth techniques are effective. Aversive therapy helps in avoiding undesired behaviour from the child in a pediatric dental clinic.
Also called audio analgesia can be used in the treatment area. It has a certain frequency that can keep the child calm during the pediatric dental procedure.