Pedodontics – pediatric dentistry

Author: Angelina Maras, MSc, DMD
specialist in preventive and pediatric dentistry

As part of my specialization, my primary job is to take care of the oral health of children and adolescents. With this specialization, I have gained professional, clinical and psychological preparation that allows me to work with very young children, and because of the approach I use, I can easily gain the trust and cooperation of children.

It is my duty to educate not only children but also adults about the importance of oral hygiene, about eating habits that can help prevent caries and ultimately treat children’s teeth. I believe that developing a quality relationship with a dentist from an early age can have a positive impact on prevention, not just the treatment of diseased teeth.

The mouth is the epicenter of children's structural, functional and cognitive growth. Primary functions such as chewing, swallowing and articulation of sounds and language develop in the mouth. It is important to monitor children from an early age and monitor them during growth and development with the application of all caries protection protocols and to correct all functional changes at an early age.

My goal is to treat deciduous and especially young permanent teeth in a way that maximizes the possible sparing of healthy dental tissue so that it can retain chewing forces for a lifetime. The protection of deciduous teeth is of utmost importance due to the later placement of permanent teeth for the reason that deciduous teeth, especially the posterior ones, save space for future permanent teeth.

My tips are:

  • take the child for the first examination by a dentist between the first and second year of life, when he is not in pain yet, so that the meeting with the dentist will be pleasant and not traumatic;
  • during the first examination the child can be accompanied by one parent, while for subsequent visits the child can be accompanied to the office by an assistant, thus it will be easier to create a good relationship and trust in the dentist;
  • book an appointment when it is a quiet day, without other obligations, let the child put on his favorite clothes and prepare it as if it were the first day of school, positive and cheerful, and it is definitely necessary to explain to the child that he is a dentist and a friend;
  • Avoid telling the child how to behave during the examination, and especially do not point out negatively as "don't cry" or "you have to be good", I would say it would be good to avoid words that could create unnecessary fear in the child, such as pain, fear, crying, etc.;
  • tell the child sympathetic stories about dentists that may interest and make him laugh, do not present the dentist as a threat and most importantly do not pass on your eventual fear of the dentist to the child;
  • During subsequent visits, when the child may be undergoing caries treatment, try to replace words like needle, sting, injection with some special and sympathetic expressions that have the same meaning but do not scare the child (eg anesthesia = magic drops).

My suggestion is:

  • that only one of the parents comes to the first check-up, if the child sees both parents, they might think that this is a terrible situation when both parents had to come!
  • get brushes that are adapted to the child's age,
  • Teach him to brush his teeth regularly in the morning, in the evening and after meals, and this will soon become a habit for the child that he will have as an adult.

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