The Difference Between a Pediatric and Family Dentist

When you’re looking for a new dentist for your children, you may run across some who call themselves pediatric dentists and others who call themselves family dentists. What’s the difference? Which should you choose for your children? Check it out!

Formal Education

Both family and pediatric dentists will receive a Doctor of Dental Surgery or a Doctor of Dental Medicine. The difference is that pediatric dentists complete an additional two years of pediatric dentistry residency training. This specialized training gives them the knowledge to understand children and the specific health and oral issues they face. It helps dentists in diagnosing and treating those issues as well. Pediatric dentists will receive an education in dealing with children who may have dental anxiety or just children who are nervous in general.

Dental Equipment

Though both a pediatric and family dentist might have equipment fit for children, a pediatric dentist may have more of what is needed. They generally also have equipment that fits a child as small as a toddler so discomfort is reduced. Chairs are often a smaller size as well, allowing the child to feel welcome and as comfortable as possible.

Office Atmosphere

Many family dentists have a small corner where children can play while they wait for a dental appointment, but the rest of the office typically has a professional feel. Pediatric dentists often have an entire atmosphere of fun and creativity. Bright colors, fish tanks, interactive play areas and cartoons are just some of the features many pediatric dentists choose to incorporate into their office, making it an exciting place for children.

Choosing the Right Dentist

Only you can choose the dentist that is right for you and your family. Speak with some dentists, both family and pediatric, so you can determine which to take your children to. After you have found the right dentist, be sure you stay current on dental visits so your children’s oral health can remain good. When your child turns 18, he or she will transition from a pediatric dentist to a family or general dentist. At that point in your child’s life, he or she may need wisdom teeth removed, cosmetic improvements and other things that a general dentist specializes in.

Contacting a Dentist Today

Understanding the difference between a pediatric and family dentist can help you make the decision about who to take your children to. For answers to any questions you may have regarding your children’s oral healthcare, contact a dentist, like a Family Dentist in Apex, NC, today.

Thank you to the experts at Alliance Dentistry for their input into pediatric and family dentists. 

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