While many dentists may restrict their practices to a particular age group, dentists who have a family practice do not. Such doctors work with all ages to help with maintenance of general oral health involving teeth and gums. If you have an extremely young child however, you may be trying to figure out whether a general dentist or a paediatric dentist is the better option. Both types of dentistry have been explained below and this will hopefully give you an idea of which is best suited for you.

Family Dentistry

Several people are of the opinion that the first step to dealing with dental problems and abnormalities is family dentistry. Dentists in these practices will set up regular check-ups for you once every six months, and will regularly clean your teeth properly to prevent build-up of plaque or development of cavities. In addition to simply visually examining your mouth, the dentist may also ask you to take x-rays to further inspect any suspected development of an oral problem.

A certified professional in this field is expected to hold several degrees. The first of these is an undergraduate degree, preferably in a subject of science, although his is not absolutely necessary. Additionally, the individual must pass the Dental Admission Test. Following this, the individual must pursue three to five years of study at a dental school. Before graduation, he/she must also pass the National Board Dental Examinations in order to be given a license. At the end, students graduate with a Doctor of Dental Surgery or Doctor of Dental Medicine.

General dentists are certified to address concerns of all adults as well as children. This is the perfect option for those individuals who want their children to consult the same dentist as they grow up. This makes it easy for all family members- children and adults- to find a suitable time to visit the same doctor for oral health.

Children have different special needs as they grow up and family dentistry doctors know and understand these needs. They are just as trained and capable in handling a child’s loose teeth and cavities as a paediatric specialist. By using fluoride, they also prevent other dental problems.

These doctors o not attach or adjust braces. But, they can ascertain the time that braces are required and recommend you to a certified, reputed orthodontist who will be able to initiate the process.

Paediatric Dentistry

If your child has certain special needs, your dental office may refer you to a specialised paediatric dentist. These doctors have additional post-graduate training as compared to a general family dentist. Paediatric dentistry is recommended as an option for children who are too young or for those children who are extremely uncomfortable with doctors and need special care.

Similar to a general dentist, paediatric dentists also cannot attach or adjust braces. But, they can help you with other oral problems and can even refer you to an orthodontist.

Family dentistry is the perfect place to start if you want to go to just one doctor for all of your children’s oral hygiene, irrespective of age. These dentists can maintain healthy teeth and gums and get them on the right track.