Your Dentist Is Probably Also a Pediatric Dentist (video)

Pediatric dentists offer family dentistryBeing a pediatric dentist isn't so different from being a general dentist. In this survey, we found that 86% of dentists say their practices offer pediatric dentistry. Only 14% said they do not treat children under age 14.

“We treat kids, but most of our dental marketing is geared toward adults 35-65," said one dentist. "We don't turn kids away, but we don't encourage them either."

"Family dentistry is more fun!" declared a pediatric dentist. "Dentistry for children leads to orthodontics which leads to wisdom teeth which leads into restorative and cosmetic dentistry."

Read more about pediatric dentists: Does your dental practice encourage pediatric patients?

Pediatric Dental Sedation Ruffles Feathers Among Dentists

Pediatric dental sedationDentists are divided over pediatric dental sedation. Our survey found that half of dentists approve of pediatric sedation dentistry (with proper training, of course), while one in three feels a general dentist should never sedate a child.

“Kids are a different breed from adults when it comes to sedation, and you REALLY have to have thorough training to sedate them,” said one dentist.

Among survey respondents, 54% say it’s a great treatment modality that requires proper training; 11% are still am not certain of its safety; and 35% think general dentists should not be performing pediatric sedation.

Here’s a sample of what dentists had to say about pediatric dental sedation:

  • “It is a great way to treat children. However, weekend courses do not give one adequate training to sedate children; one needs to be formally trained.” (Arizona pediatric dentist)
  • “Proper training and the use of modern equipment are the key.” (California dentist)
  • “This is the most delicate group of all patients, and the one that GP’s should be very cautious when treated. This also is the group that has the most incidents when sedation is performed.”(Florida dentist)
  • “It should be done more often.” (Orthodontist)
  • “Just ask an anesthesiologist. They all say NO!!! No one should!!!” (Massachusetts pediatric dentist)
  • “I am a pediatric dentist. I used to offer it in my practice. I have stopped since 2004. I recommend that it is used ONLY in a hospital setting.” (Massachusetts pediatric dentist)
  • “There are a small number of general dentists who will obtain the necessary training to SAFELY provide sedation services for children, but I can’t for the life of me understand why they would want to.” (California oral surgeon)
  • “There is no excuse for inadequate training. You must be on top of your game and realize it is not successful all the time. Still will need a source where pedodontics can be done under a general anesthetic.” (Oklahoma dentist)
  • “Pediatric sedation should be performed only in a hospital setting and only for special-needs children. The rest of children do great if you will only be patient with them and do ‘show and tell.’ The most difficult children always, and I mean always, do great and overcome their fear if you give them time and love and show them how trust works.” (California children’s dentist)

Read more: Pediatric Sedation Dentistry Causes Disagreement Among Dentists

Listen to what Dr. Michael Silverman has to say about DOCS Education’s evolving stance on the subject: Dental Continuing Education for Pediatric Sedation

Pediatric Sedation Dentistry (Survey Video)

Pediatric sedation dentistry dentist survey videoPediatric sedation dentistry can be a valuable part of children’s dentistry.

In this survey of dentists, 68% say they are in favor of children’s sedation dentistry. Note that when we asked the same question in 2010, only 52% were in favor.

“It requires extensive training and case selection is very important,” warned a pediatric dentist.

Jim Du Molin and Julie Frey discuss what dentists think about pediatric sedation dentistry:

“At our office, an MD anesthesiologist provides sedation while I perform the dentistry,” said a Missouri dentist.

“I have been doing all forms of sedation for over 30 years,” said a Texas periodontist. “Young children are very brittle and administration requires advanced training for the safest outcomes.”

“It’s the only way to treat some kids,” sighed a Georgia dentist. “I sure am thankful that I can refer to someone who does it as I would not want the liability and stress myself!”

It’s important to remember that kids are dental patients too! And sedation dentistry is a real boon to many dental patients.

Do you have any further thoughts on pediatric sedation dentistry?

The Pediatric Dentist Protects Kids’ Teeth, Parents’ Freedom

The pediatric dentist is important for children's dental healthThe pediatric dentist should be a part of every kid’s childhood.

And the consequences of avoiding the children’s dentist can go far beyond cavities and tooth decay… Just ask the Washington state mother who was convicted in court for not having taken her son to the dentist.

The developmentally disabled 10-year-old boy had more than one abscessed tooth; in court papers, one doctor compared the boy’s tooth pain to “being shot with a nail gun.”

The boy had several teeth removed. His mother claimed that she had no idea a tooth abscess could be life-threatening, and that she did not have the money to take him to a pediatric dentist.

After a jury trial, she was convicted of second-degree criminal mistreatment.

Read more about this pediatric dentistry case: Mom convicted over lack of dental care for son

Louisiana Wants To Ban Mobile Dental Clinics

The Louisiana legislature is considering a bill – backed by state’s Dental Association – that would ban mobile dental clinics that travel to schools to provide dental care to children.

Critics say these travelling clinics (often set up in school gymnasiums or libraries) are unsanitary and inadequate.

Some changes to the bill have loosened the regulations, allowing mobile clinics to treat children in areas the state has deemed underserved by dentists.

Mobile clinics have become more common in Louisiana in the past year because higher Medicaid payouts have made treating poor children more profitable. No problems have been reported.

Read more about it

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