Does my child need to see a pediatric dentist?

April 24, 2019
Posted By: Christopher Wahlers

At Wahlers Family Dentistry, we see patients of all ages from toddlers to the elderly.  We love the youngest patients in our practice; unlike most adult patients they are usually happy and excited to be here!  Many parents wonder if a pediatric dentist is a better choice than a general dentist for their children.  The answer is a matter of personal preference.  Although most young children in this area of Pennsylvania see a pediatrician for their medical care, general dentists (and not pediatric dentists) actually see the majority of children for their dental care.  This is because routine dental care for children is not that different than dental care for adults.  Dental cleanings and polishings, occasional X-rays to check for decay, and dental examinations are performed on children just as they are performed on adults.  In addition, fluoride treatments and sealants are some of the preventive measures that we perform on many of our young patients if deemed appropriate.

So what does a pediatric dentist offer that a general dentist does not?  For one thing, pediatric dentists are highly trained to treat behavioral issues.  Some young children have trouble sitting still and/or cooperating at a dental visit.  Pediatric dentists may be the better option in this case.  Most pediatric dentists are also trained in various forms of sedation, and especially if complex dental care is needed (crowns, root canals, extractions, large fillings), they often will sedate young children during their care to provide optimal treatment.  There are many wonderful pediatric dentists in the area that have helped our patients that have required complex dental care.

In our office we have a book containing photos of hundreds of children who have been patients in our office over the years.  Many of those children are now adults that bring their own children to see us for care!  We feel honored when patients bring their young children to us, because they trust us.  However, we also understand that some parents prefer their children to see a pediatric dentist and that is absolutely fine.  If you have ever have questions about our services (pediatric or otherwise) never hesitate to ask!

--Christopher Wahlers, DMD

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