It is a common saying among many individuals that being ‘good with people’ is an inborn art and owes little to science. It is true that some individuals have a more open disposition and can relate well to others. However, there is no logical reason why all of us shouldn’t be able to put young patients at their ease and show that we are interested in their problems. Interacting effectively with children is of great value, as being friendly with younger patients is a practice-builder and can reduce the stress involved when offering clinical care.
The way we dentists communicate with patients will have a major influence on the success of any clinical or preventive care. Clearly, only broad guidelines can be presented on how to maintain an effective patient relationship, as all of us are unique individuals with different needs and aspirations. This is especially true in case of pediatric dentistry where a clinician may have to treat a 3-year-old child at one appointment and an hour and a half later be faced with the problem of offering preventive advice on oral health to a recalcitrant 10 year old. There are, however, common findings which highlight the key issues that will cause a dentist/ patient consultation to progress satisfactorily.
As with any health issue the social class background of the respondent influences attitudes and beliefs. A major point to emphasize is that technical skill is usually judged in terms of caring and affection,a finding which adds further weight to the importance of dentists developing a good ‘chair- side relation’. Explanation, ‘taking the time to talk us through what our child’s treatment will entail’, is another factor which is rated high and may actually influence the rate of attendance for follow-up appointments.
DENTAL CARE FOR YOUR BABY
When does one plus one equal zero? ONE Child dentition + ONE pediatric dental visit = ZERO cavities.
A child should be seen by a pediatric dentist, no matter how young that child is, if the parent thinks there could be a dental problem. No child is too young for dental health. Pacifiers have a few rules of thumb, pun intended. The three things to consider are frequency (How often do they suck?); duration (How long do they suck?); and intensity. Before the teeth erupt, clean the baby’s mouth and gums with a soft cloth or infant toothbrush at bath time. This helps ready the baby for the teeth cleaning to come.
COSMETIC & RESTORATIVE DENTISTRY FOR CHILDREN AND TEENS
Children smile when they are proud of their teeth. At school and at play, a healthy smile helps them feel more confident. A pediatric dentist can tell parents about advancing treatments to enhance or restore a child’s smile.
WHITENING TOOTHPASTES: DO THEY REALLY WORK?
Whitening toothpastes contain chemicals or polishing agents that can remove stains from the teeth. If the teeth are darker than they used to be because of surface stains, whitening toothpastes can brighten a child smile.
BLEACHING: GREAT CHOICES TO BRIGHTEN YOUR SMILE
Bleaching will brighten the color of teeth that are discolored, stained, or have been darkened as a result of injury. It changes the color of teeth of children without removing any tooth structure. One treatment choice is in-office bleaching. A bleaching agent is applied to his teeth and then activated and set with heat or light. Each visit takes about an hour, and usually one to four visits are needed. The pediatric dentist can lighten as few or as many teeth as needed.
MICROABRASION: GOOD FIRST CHOICE FOR TOOTH STAINS OR SPOTS
Microabrasion is an excellent option for children or teens who want to change the color of certain areas or spots on the teeth, rather than lighten the color of the whole tooth. The pediatric dentist removes microscopic particles of discolored tooth enamel with an abrasive and a mild acid. Treatment usually can be completed in one visit. Microabrasion is a conservative treatment modality, removing little tooth structure.
BONDING AND VENEERS: RESTORE THE LOOK OF CHIPPED, BROKEN AND PITTED TEETH
This can restore the original shape of a chipped, broken or pitted tooth. They can brighten front teeth that are stained or discolored. The treatments involve bonding tooth-colored plastic or cementing tooth-colored veneers to the teeth. They require negligible loss of tooth structure, and they restore the natural appearance of teeth and encourage a confident smile. Bonding materials, often called composite resins, are tooth-colored plastics.
Porcelain crowns can give beautiful cosmetic and restorative results for discolored, chipped or broken teeth. However, parents must consider two things:
1.First, crowns are more costly than other treatments; and second, a crown requires the removal of required amount of tooth structure.
2.On the other hand, crowns are stronger than the other cosmetic choices and can last for good period of time with good dental health habits. Porcelain crowns are reserved for permanent teeth that are fully erupted in the gum tissue.
ORTHODONTIC TREATMENT: ADVANTAGES GO FAR BEYOND COSMETICS
A pediatric dentist can identify crowded or misaligned teeth and actively intervene to guide the teeth as they come in the mouth. Children usually have an upper front teeth protruded as a result of genetics. They become worse if a child has a habit of sucking on their thumb or their pacifier for many years, if they have developed poor chewing habits or if they have the nervous habit of tongue thrusting against their teeth. Additionally, children may develop an underbite as a result of respiratory or other problems that cause them to breathe through their mouth. Of all the braces, aligners, are the most aesthetically pleasing. They are invisible and can be removed before eating or brushing your teeth. They are comfortable and the easier to clean. Aligners may cost more than traditional metal or ceramic braces. They are not suitable for severely crowded or misaligned teeth.
Minimal invasive dentistry (MID) – Emerging trend in pediatric dentistry
Modern dentistry has evolved into minimally invasive approach. Natural human enamel and dentin are still the best dental materials in existence and thus “minimally invasive dental procedures” that conserve a major part of the natural, healthy structure of tooth, is being focused on. The application of “minimally invasive dentistry” can be justified on the grounds that no restorative material can definitely replace natural tooth structure for the long-term and hence its preservation is most important.
Principles of MID
A. Early diagnosis of dental caries
B. Classification of caries depth and progression
C. Assessment of individual risk
D. Optimal caries preventive measures
E. Remineralization of initial lesions
F. Minimal surgical intervention of carious tooth
G. Repair rather than a replacement of defective restoration
H. Assess disease management outcomes at intervals