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You may already have a great relationship with your family dentist. That’s great! There are plenty of practitioners of family dentistry that do a wonderful job with patients of any age. But for those who may have a young child with behavior problems at the dentist, or truly special needs that require a compassionate touch, consider the pediatric dentist.

Many people don’t understand the special focus of a pediatric dentist. Not only are they trained to treat patients who are very young, but they have entered the field because of their particular interest and compassion for those among us that have special needs, and have received specific training to aid in dealing with behavioral problems. Plus, they are available to help these patients well beyond childhood and into adulthood.

Everyone attending dental school will be trained in some aspects of pediatric dentistry, just as they will be trained somewhat in the other specialties like oral surgery, periodontics, orthodontics, etc. Once the specialty of pediatric dentistry is chosen, the dental student will need to complete another two years of residency in a clinic whereby they gain additional experience and learn specialized skills related to young people and special needs patients. Such training includes child psychology, child-related pharmacology, child development, and other areas that are uniquely related to children and those with special needs.

Once out of residency, the practicing pediatric dentist will know how to treat the particular issues of children and special needs patients–not only conforming their approach to their unique clients but transforming their office, equipment, staff, decor, tools, etc., in order to make them feel comfortable.

If you’d like more information on the differences between a general dentist and a pediatric dentist, call Drs. Boozer, Massey, Shuttlesworth, Airheart, Flanders, and Lindsey and our helpful team at Dental Works. Phone: 903-675-0023, or come by our office in Athens, Texas.