Introduction to pediatric dentistry
1 Definition of pediatric dentistry
According to AAPD(America Academy of Pediatric Dentistry), Pediatric dentistry is an age-defined specialty that provides both primary and comprehensive preventive and therapeutic oral health care for infants and children through adolescence, including those with special health care needs.
The definition gives us answers for the following questions:
a. Who are the objects of Pediatric dentistry?
n Infants and children through adolescence
n including those with special health care needs
b. What does the Pediatric dentistry provide?
n Provides both primary and comprehensive preventive oral health care
n Provides both primary and comprehensive therapeutic oral health care
c. What are the key elements of this definition that make it so unique?
n “age-defined”: most specialties are procedure defined (endodontics, periodontics, etc.). Pediatric dentists provide care for their specific age group of patients. There is no limitation to what type of treatment they provide.
n “primary and comprehensive...care”: Pediatric dentists are primary providers. There is no need for a referral of patients. Parents can choose to have their children evaluated and treated by a pediatric dentist just like they can choose to have their child treated by a pediatrician.
n “infants and children through adolescence”: Pediatric dentists see patients at any age from birth up to their late teens.
n “special health care needs”: Pediatric dentists have the training and experience to evaluate and treat patients, that are medically compromised. This includes patients with hemophilia, leukemia, congenital syndromes, etc... No other dental specialty, other than OMS is more involved in hospital care of patients.
We’ve talked about the four key elements in the definition that make the Pedodontics so unique, now if you find the Pedodontics has its sunshinning future, and welcome you join us and become one of pediatric dentist.