The old adage ‘never work with animals or children’ was attributed, wrongly, to WC Fields. It was applied to show business but in a broader sense it suggests that animals and children are unpredictable and therefore avoided. It needs patience perhaps to deal with them which is a reason why a dentist specializing in pediatrics may well need a little bit more than skill and knowledge when treating his or her patients.
When it comes to dentists, the time when parents can best teach their children good habits is when they are young. In terms of oral hygiene the younger the better because people who start to look after their teeth at a young age have the best chance of good teeth for life. Once baby teeth goes, no one gets a second chance. It is that new set for life.
A pediatric dentist will have taken a post graduate course after qualifying and must be able to communicate well with children who become adolescents. During these years youngsters need to understand the importance of their teeth and put their trust in their dentist. This is the time when they may need braces to straighten their teeth and few will wear them with any enthusiasm initially. At one time the only option was metal and it was easy for wearers to feel self-conscious and lack confidence. Nowadays braces can be color less or the color of the natural teeth but it is still a long process from first having braces fitted to the time when teeth have been corrected as much as possible.
If a dentist cannot gain patient trust there is an immediate problem. Even those not requiring braces must accept a pediatric dentist’s advice about regular brushing, flossing and using a mouthwash. In this way debris and bacteria that form in the mouth is removed reducing the chances of decay and cavities. It is commonly accepted that children eat too many sweets and cakes and fizzy drinks have more attraction for them than water. Sugar is a major enemy to teeth and regular brushing is essential so that sugary deposits are removed from the mouth as well as the plaque that develops on the enamel.
Pediatric dentists tend to be among the top band on graduation; it means hard work therefore as well as the people skills to persuade and cajole youngsters to accept their advice from an early age and persevere until treatment is completed as well as making regular check-ups to make sure that their teeth are fine.