Age Limit for Pediatric Dentists
Pediatric Dentists are dental professionals specializing in the treatment of children up to the age of 18. Of course there are exceptions and each individual is different but your child’s pediatric dentist will be able to guide you as your child grows.
At what age should my child see a Pediatric Dentist for the first time?
Your child’s first dental visit should occur by their first birthday or after their first tooth comes in, whichever occurs first. Children as young as six months old can see a pediatric dentist if a tooth erupts. Infant oral care is often overlooked but it is important because a Pediatric Dentist can help identify and correct congenital abnormalities which can benefit your child as they grow.
Your child’s Pediatric Dentist will help you learn how to care for your child’s teeth and teach them how to care for their teeth as they get older. Pediatric offices are focused on the care and comfort of their young patients so the doctors and staff will all be well educated on how best to care for your child.
When do I transition my child to a General Dentist?
Every child is different and you may have a hard time deciding when to make the switch from their Pediatric Dentist to your family Dentist. Their Pediatric Dentist will help you know when it is time to release them from their care and turn them over to a general Dentist. Most parents prefer to keep their children in the pediatric practice throughout their teen years, possibly up to the age of 18.
It is important to speak with your child about their oral care and what doctor they would prefer to see. They may decide they are ready for a general Dentist before the age of 18 and their Pediatric Dentist will be there to help you make the transition. Your child’s dental care comes first so when the time comes, their pediatric office will send all of their treatment records and dental x-rays to their new adult office!
Regardless of your child's age, it is important for them to see an appropriate dentist. After they transition out of their pediatric office, a general Dentist will be better suited to their new adult dental needs. An adult dental office will also have a more age appropriate office environment for your child, as well as the tools needed for treating adult patients.
In the event that your child has special needs and is comfortable with their Pediatric Dentist, you and their doctor may decide that it is more beneficial for your child to continue their dental care with their pediatric office.
No matter your individual family situation, together you and your child’s Dentist will determine the best plan of action to best care for your child.