Many things change as your little one enters their teenage years. They want to hang out with their friends more and desire a lot more freedom. One thing they also may want to change is going to their pediatric dentist. While they will eventually change dental offices, continuing to see their pediatric dentist until they are 18 years old is best for their oral health. Read on to learn three reasons why.
1. Pediatric Dentists Specialize in Growing Smiles
Once your child enters their teenage years, they say goodbye to their baby teeth and hello to their permanent, adult teeth. However, other aspects of their facial structure are continuing to change day by day. Their teeth, gums, and jawbone are continuing to transform. A pediatric dentist is able to evaluate the changes that occur in your teen’s oral cavity and face. As a result, they can provide necessary treatment to make adjustments when necessary to avoid more serious and complex dental problems in the future.
2. Their Wisdom Teeth May Need to Be Removed
Wisdom teeth typically come in between 17 and 22 years of age. However, they can begin to cause complications much earlier. These third sets of molars can lead to crowding and discomfort. As a result, they begin to easily collect bacteria which can lead to severe tooth decay. Your child’s pediatric dentist can closely monitor the development of their wisdom teeth and advise when (and if) it’s best to have them removed. Since 90% of people have at least one impacted wisdom tooth, it is in the best interest of your child’s oral health to keep an eye on them. Oftentimes, it can be more beneficial to their dental health to have them removed to not only prevent cavities, but also gum disease, increased pain, or misalignment. By seeing a pediatric dentist, the early signs of dental issues can be caught, and a treatment plan can be formulated to keep your teen’s smile healthy and pain-free!
3. Orthodontics May Be Necessary
As mentioned above, your teenager’s mouth is still growing and changing. As they inch closer to adulthood, there is the possibility that issues may occur that may require orthodontics. Their permanent teeth and jaw may not develop properly aligned. This could cause a multitude of problems with their pearly whites, like crowding, gapped teeth, overbite, and underbite. As your teen continues to see a pediatric dentist, they will be able to monitor the development of their jaw, teeth, and overall bite. They can then suggest any necessary orthodontic treatments at any point during their developing years.
It’s exciting to see your child grow during their adolescent years, and you want to do all you can to ensure optimal well-being in all areas of their life. By continuing to visit a pediatric dentist, their smile will continue to grow healthy and happy!
About the Author
Dr. Neil Dean and his team at KidSmiles Dental and Orthodontics are eager to keep your teenager’s smile thriving and beautiful! He earned his dental degree from the University of Missouri-Kansas City, and he obtained his specialty certificate in pediatric dentistry at the Texas A&M College of Dentistry. With over 20 years of experience, he provides a full range of dental services for children and teenagers. To schedule an appointment, contact him through his website or call (972) 884-5450.