Once your child reaches their teen years, you may wonder if a specific dentist exists for teens. Thankfully, just because your child is a teen doesn’t mean they need to find a new dentist. Most dentists recommend your child keep seeing their pediatric dentist well into their teenage years. The recommended age to switch from a pediatric dentist is 18. There are several reasons why your child should stick with a pediatric dentist, including continuity of care and familiarity with the team.
While teens are usually more used to going to the dentist than small children, they can still have some dental anxiety. This dental anxiety would likely increase if they had to switch to an adult dentist while in the sensitive teenage years. Thankfully, pediatric dentists are trained on how best to treat children of all ages, including those entering their adolescent years. By sticking with the same dental team, you keep things familiar for your child and ensure they get continual treatment without switching to a new, unfamiliar practice.
Keeping the same pediatric dentist can also help ensure your child gets the treatment they need during their teenage years. Teenagers usually need dental sealants and may require wisdom teeth removal. Their pediatric dentist can easily track these things, allowing your teen to get the most up-to-date treatments every time they visit the office. On top of this, teenagers are likely to consume sugary beverages, meaning frequent dental check-ups are needed to prevent cavities.
Even though your child is a teenager, you should still pay attention to their dental health. Getting twice-yearly dental cleanings is still important for dental patients of all ages, as it can prevent cavities and help identify other dental issues before they become serious. It would help if you encouraged your teen to brush their teeth twice daily and floss once daily. Alcohol-free mouthwash can also help reduce bad breath and keep your teen’s teeth healthy and happy.
While teenagers may not enjoy going to the dentist, you can help them feel more comfortable in the office by working with your pediatrician to give your teen some input on their dental health. Allowing them to choose the color of their brace bands, asking questions of the dentist, and keeping them appraised of what is happening can all show your teen you trust them and know they’re growing up. Of course, don’t be surprised if your teen still wants stickers or other prizes after their dental appointment: just because they are growing up doesn’t mean they can’t still enjoy small prizes after a stressful appointment!
If you’re looking for dentists for teens, contact Smile First Pediatric Dentistry. Our team of trained pediatric dentists can help ensure your teen gets the treatment they need. From standard check-ups to more intensive care, our office is there to help you keep your child healthy every step of the way. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact us today at (631) 563-7462.
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