Finding a Great Pediatric Dentist for Your Kids

Your child’s teeth are very important to their overall health.  Neglecting a child’s baby teeth impacts the spacing of permanent teeth and increases the number of cavities a child experiences.  Training them early to care for their teeth also gets them in a pattern of good oral health.  A pediatric dentist can help you understand the different stages of your child’s teeth, how to care for them properly, and assess any problems that might occur as they are growing in.  Catching problems early on can sometimes help them to be minimized, saving oral health and money in dental treatments later.
When you are looking for a pediatric dentist, you should look for a dentist that offers the services that specifically help take care of a child’s baby teeth and the adult teeth that start to come in.  In addition, it is important to find a gentle dental practice so that your child does not develop phobias of the dentist due to painful first experiences.  Unless there are problems that you see developing in your child’s teeth, you should take them to the dentist for their first checkup as early as 1 year old.  Obviously, you need a dentist that is willing to be very patient, calm, and gentle as they examine your toddler’s baby teeth.
Your family or pediatric dentist will look for signs of tooth decay, check the bite and alignment of the teeth, and make sure that your child’s oral health is developing appropriately for their age.  There are also preventative services that you should see if a dentist offers.  Will they teach you and your children how to properly care for their teeth?  Sometimes, hearing about dental health from a professional motivates children more than instruction from parents.  Another assistance in the prevention of cavities and tooth decay is in the application of dental sealants and fluoride.  Many children drink bottled water instead of fluoridated tap water these days.  Fluoride attracts calcium to areas of demineralization to strength your child’s teeth.
Dental sealants, thin layers of plastic applied to the teeth, protect against the effects of bacteria and sugars.  The modern American diet is horrible for teeth, with high sugar and acid contents like in soda.  Dental sealants applied by your pediatric or family dentist create a barrier against these forces of decay.  A family dentist who provides kids’ dental services is often a better choice than a strictly pediatric dental practice.  When a child turns eighteen, they can continue to see the family dentist providing continuity in oral health and development.

Dr. Hazim is a member of the American Dental Association and the Texas Dental Association. A graduate of Loyola University, Dr. Hazim has undergone continuing education at the Pankey Institute and has received accreditation from the Western Regional Examining Board.

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