What is Pediatric Dentistry?

Pedodontics (Pediatric Dentistry) is a branch of science that applies all kinds of milk and permanent dental treatments, dental traumas, and treatments, starting with preventive dentistry applications in children aged 0-15. Child treatment requires special attention. It is necessary to know child psychology well, to accustom them to the dentist’s chair without frightening them, and to inform them about dental cleaning so that they can live with healthy teeth throughout their lives.

The Importance of Baby Teeth in Children

The primary task of milk teeth is to ensure the proper nutrition for the child. In addition, the proper development of speech also depends on the presence of milk teeth. Parents don’t care, thinking that milk teeth are temporary and will change anyway, so this kind of thinking causes the milk teeth to decay by neglecting the cleaning. It should not be forgotten that untreated milk tooth decay causes pain, bad smell, difficulty in chewing, malnutrition, and an ugly appearance. Untreated dental disorders in this period may cause tooth distortion, a disorder in jaw development, and general health problems in the future.

  • There are 20 milk teeth in total.
  • It is normal for milk teeth to be open between them. The reason for this is to provide space for permanent teeth to replace them.
  • Decay may also occur in milk teeth. These bruises must also be treated.
  • If milk teeth are inflamed, root canal treatment should be tried first, and if it is not possible, the tooth should be extracted.
  • If the primary teeth are pulled out prematurely, there is no room for the permanent tooth coming from below and a narrowness of space occurs.

When do milk teeth come out? when does it drop?

The first milk teeth in children are about 6-8. It starts to last in months and is completed in approximately 30 months.

The eruption of permanent teeth and the fall of milk teeth starts at the age of 6 and continues until the average age of 13. In children, the milk molars in the posterior region will remain in the mouth until the age of 10-12 and will allow chewing. It is very important to treat and protect this face.

Should a specialist dentist take care of my child?

Your child’s first dental experience is a start that will affect how he or she will feel about it for the rest of his life. A negative introduction will create fear and distrust, and as a result, will affect subsequent dental visits. Therefore, the dentist who will take care of your child should be a pedodontist who specializes in communication with children. The first visit should be scheduled immediately after the child’s first tooth erupts.

All necessary dental treatments in children are applied to children by pedodontists. The good oral and dental health of children can be ensured by regular dental check-ups every 6 months. During these controls, all kinds of problems that threaten oral and dental health can be detected. The important thing here is the early diagnosis and treatment of these problems. Early diagnosis will positively affect the child’s physical and emotional development.

How should I prepare my child for the first dental visit?

Before bringing your child to the dentist, he or she should be briefly briefed on why this visit will be made. Parents’ anxious and tense attitudes on this issue and sharing their negative experiences with their children will set a negative example for the child. It is also extremely wrong to frighten the child with the concepts of ‘doctor’ and ‘needle’. If possible, it will encourage the child to watch the mother or father while undergoing dental treatment.

How is the child examined?

The first examination of a child patient begins with communicating with both the child and the child’s parents. After the meeting, the patient’s medical and dental history is taken. Then, clinical and radiographic examination is started. After these stages, the patient, and his parents are informed about the diagnosis and treatment planning. Pedodontists apply many methods to protect primary and permanent teeth from major oral diseases such as caries and periodontal diseases. These methods are; teaching the concept of oral hygiene, acquiring the habit of brushing teeth, applying systemic and topical fluoride, and applying fissure sealants.

Fluoride Applications

Fluoride treatments, which are accepted as the most effective form of treatment in preventive dentistry, can be applied in healthy individuals, individuals prone to caries, in the treatment of sensitivity and erosion in the teeth, and in individuals with systemic diseases who need special care. Applications are carried out at the frequency and amount determined according to the age and risk of caries formation of the individual.

Fissure Sealers

Anatomically, the recesses and protrusions on the chewing surfaces of the molars create areas where they can stick for food.

Rot begins in these areas that are difficult to clean. Fissure sealants help to create a surface on the teeth that will shallow these surfaces, reduce the adhesion of foods and facilitate brushing. It has been reported that caries formation decreased by 70%-80% after clinical applications.


Baby teeth play an important role in your child’s facial and jaw development. Some milk teeth should remain in the mouth until the age of 12. However, at this age, all milk teeth are replaced by permanent teeth. It is very difficult for milk teeth that have not been carefully preserved to remain in the mouth until this age. Early loss of even milk teeth can lead to serious orthodontic disorders in the future. First of all, various treatments are applied to keep the milk teeth in the mouth. Just like in adults, filling and root canal treatment can be applied to milk teeth. However, the position of the milk teeth that are lost early due to various reasons such as caries or trauma should be protected with placeholders. Otherwise, bigger problems may be encountered at later ages. When the primary tooth is lost early, two situations can occur until the permanent tooth erupts; The teeth on both sides of the extraction site may curve or turn to close this gap. This may cause the underlying permanent tooth to erupt or become impacted. The tooth opposite the extraction site may extend into this space.

Placeholders can be made of metal or plastic. It is prepared in two ways as fixed placeholders and mobile placeholders according to the number and localization of prematurely lost primary teeth. After oral measurements are taken by the dentist, the technician prepares the appropriate placeholder in the laboratory environment. Then the prepared placeholder is adapted to the patient’s mouth by the dentist. The patient uses the placeholder under the control of the physician and is removed by the physician when the primary tooth begins to erupt.

What Are the Roles of Placeholders?

  • It prevents the extraction space from being closed by other teeth and maintains this space until the permanent tooth erupts, allowing the permanent tooth to erupt in the ideal position.
  • It helps to prevent orthodontic problems that may occur in the future.
  • It prevents crowding as it keeps the teeth in the ideal position. Thus, it provides advantages such as a good array of teeth, easily brushed teeth, and fewer interface caries formation.

Fixed Placeholders

It is performed in single-tooth deficiencies. Points to consider when using are:

  • Your doctor should be informed when a problem arises or plays a placeholder.
  • Sticky foods should not be chewed in the area of the placeholder.
  • It is necessary to come for control 3 months after the date of installation.

Movable Placeholders

It is performed in the absence of more than one milk tooth. These placeholders are removable appliances.

Points to consider in use are:

  • Taking it out while eating,
  • Taking it off while lying down and storing it in water,
  • To clean the placeholder with a brush while brushing the teeth,
  • Notifying the dentist immediately in case of any fracture in the placeholder,
  • To go for control 3 months after the date of installation.


  1. My child’s tooth hurts, what should I do?

Your child’s toothache is most likely due to tooth decay. First of all, the teeth should be brushed and the teeth should be cleaned with dental floss so that there is no food residue. If necessary, painkillers should be given and a pedodontist should be consulted as soon as possible. In these cases, the unconscious use of antibiotics is quite wrong. This decision should be left to your pedodontist. Hot compresses and aspirin should not be applied to the painful area.

  1. What should I do if my child falls out and the milk tooth comes out completely?

You should contact your Pedodontist immediately. Completely displaced primary teeth should not be repositioned as they may damage the permanent teeth that are developing underneath.

  1. What should I do if my child falls out and the permanent tooth is completely dislodged?

First of all, the displaced tooth must be found. The tooth should be kept not touching the root part and should only be washed with clean water. If the tooth preserves its integrity, it should be replaced. The child should bite a gauze or clean cloth to ensure that the tooth does not come out. If the tooth cannot be replaced, it can be carried in cold milk, water, or your child’s saliva. You should immediately apply to the pedodontist or in the evening hours to the dental clinics of the hospitals. The chances of success are quite high in treatments performed within 2 hours of the trauma.

  1. What should I do if a tooth fracture occurs as a result of trauma?

You should contact your pedodontist immediately. If the broken part can be found, it should be preserved in cold milk or water. It is possible to use this part in restoring the tooth. Treatments performed as soon as possible will prevent larger problems from occurring.

  1. What should I do if my child has a fracture in the jaw area?

In these cases, emergency medical attention is required first, as there may be a possible head injury. Fractures in this area should be examined and treated first by medical doctors, then by oral and maxillofacial surgeons.

  1. Is it possible to protect my child from dental injuries?

If you have a toddler-crawling child, plastic protectors should be attached to the sharp corners of the house so that they can bump into them.

A child seat must be used and a seat belt must be worn during car journeys.

Tooth fractures and soft tissue injuries can be prevented with the ‘mouthguard’ prepared by the dentist for children who play sports such as basketball, football, boxing, skiing, cycling, and skating.

  1. My child’s placeholder is broken – what should I do?

If the placeholder is loose or a part of it is broken, it should be removed from the mouth if it can be removed. If it cannot be removed and disturbs the soft tissue, your pedodontist should be contacted and that area should be protected with cotton until the examination is performed.


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