Pediatric Dentistry

Pediatric Dentistry
Because infants, young children, and adolescents have distinct oral health needs during the various stages of childhood development, pediatric dentists work in helping children of all ages maintain optimal oral health. At Southern Connecticut Dental Group, we are passionate about helping young patients build a foundation for good oral health that will last a lifetime. Our dentists serve patients from New Haven County and the surrounding communities from our offices in Southbury and Ansonia, Connecticut.

Pediatric Dentistry Q & A

What is pediatric dentistry?  

Although general dentists are trained to treat the entire family, pediatric dentists have special training to handle problems that are specific to children, such as dental developmental difficulties, as well as root canals on permanent teeth that haven’t fully formed. Pediatric dentists provide comprehensive oral care that includes a wide range of services, such as:

  • Infant oral health exams, including a risk assessment for dental cavities
  • Preventive dental care, which includes routine cleanings and exams, fluoride treatments, and sealants
  • Lifestyle counseling, including dietary and nutritional advice, as well as recommendations on how to curtail pacifier use and thumb sucking
  • Orthodontics, including early assessment and treatment for straightening teeth and correcting a bite
  • Diagnosis of oral conditions that may be related to serious conditions such as diabetes, asthma, a congenital heart defect, hay fever, and attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder   
  • Management of gum conditions, including ulcers and pediatric periodontal disease
  • Urgent care for fractured teeth, knocked-out permanent teeth, and other dental emergencies

When should my baby first see the dentist?

Ideally, your baby’s first dental appointment should be between the ages of 6 and 12 months, or no more than 6 months after his first tooth erupts. At this time in your baby’s growth, a pediatric dentist can assess the development of his mouth. Because many dental problems begin early, early intervention is key to preventing bigger issues. One problem that should be caught as quickly as possible is baby bottle tooth decay, which happens when the sugary substances in breastmilk, formula, or juice combine with saliva to form pools inside your baby’s mouth. If left undiscovered, this chronic problem can lead to premature decay of your baby’s primary teeth, which may interfere with the proper formation of his permanent teeth down the road.

How else can a pediatric dentist help?  

Just as many adults find it difficult to go to the dentist, it can also be a stressful experience for children. Pediatric dentists are specially trained to provide gentle, comfortable care, and ease a child’s fears once they’re in the chair. Pediatric dentists also have equipment that’s specifically designed to fit comfortably in children’s smaller mouths. Our dentists can also reinforce the good oral hygiene habits that you’ve established at home by helping your child learn the best way to brush and floss.   

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