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How We Transition Pediatric Patients To Adult Treatment

For many pediatric dentists, helping children grow up with good dental care is one of the biggest accomplishments. Through the years of reinforcing good hygiene habits, many dentists watch their patients grow into adults and often share those experiences with their parents. However, all children eventually grow up, and part of being a pediatric dentist means helping parents and their adolescent children transition into adult dental care. For us, it is just as important for them to learn about what their dental health care will look like from now on, and through us, we can ease this transition into adulthood in many ways.

How We Help Prepare Adolescents For Adult Care

Transitioning into adult care is a pivotal moment for them. However, one of the problems in dental care is the lack of communication and preparation they have when they transition. Only about half of patients coming into this stage were properly communicated about their new expectations and changes to their dental care. This change can be startling for adolescents, especially when they eventually learn that their parent’s dental insurance won’t cover them, will have to schedule appointments on their own, and instill the habits they’ve learned over the years into their adult life.

However, pediatric dentists focusing on these transition stages will often have plans and measures in place to work with their patients and their parents about their treatments. For parents, this means considering many questions about what this transition entails. Parents wishing to take advantage of the time they have can work with their pediatric dentist, asking questions about topics such as:

  • Transition Policies: Almost all clinics will have their transition policies, and many of them will differ depending on the practice. Some policies will state that children can stay within their care until their parent’s insurance no longer covers them. Others will require an immediate transition until they reach a certain age. By inquiring about their policy, parents can get the necessary information to prepare their children for adulthood.
  • Patient Monitoring: Many pediatric practices will have their patient’s files on hand and can alert parents about their policies. This means that parents and their adolescents can learn about their medical information and work with their pediatric dentist to transition their records to their new dentist.
  • Readiness Assessments: Lastly, readiness assessments are used to help patients transition from pediatric care into adult care. As the main way to work with their patients, patients as young as fourteen will work with their dentists to learn the basics of dental care to encourage growth and independence and take better control over their dental care by the time they reach adulthood.

Communicate With Your Pediatric Dentist To Learn More

All of these topics are essential for both parents and their children, especially for children reaching the point of adolescence. Understanding their oral health, speaking with your dentist about their treatments, and helping patients achieve independence and autonomy are some of the best ways to accomplish these goals. Speaking with your dentist can help prepare your child for adult treatment and give them the advantage they need for good oral health.

Mail-in braces have been an ongoing trend, but it’s also become one of the most harmful trends out there for children and teenagers looking to straighten their smiles. For those looking into online options for dental care, mail-in braces may seem like the perfect solution at first, but they come with many underlying risks that can be permanent and harmful to your child’s oral health. These types of braces can be especially dangerous for children with misaligned teeth, and we’re here to explain why they should be avoided at all costs.

Mail-In Orthodontics: Is It Too Good To Be True?

When pediatric dentists and orthodontists work to align your child’s smile, they work with research-backed techniques and safety measures that protect your child’s teeth from any potential damage during the alignment process. During alignment, your child’s teeth will move gradually due to the shift and pressure placed along the bones and tissues within their mouths. Because of how intricate this system is, it’s often considered easier for children to straighten their teeth due to the changes their bodies go through as they get older.

However, problems come in when treatments such as mail-in braces. Mail-in braces attempt to offer unique advantages over other orthodontic treatments, such as better financial costs, faster straightening capabilities, and ease of use. But these devices, in reality, cause more problems. This is because they don’t provide the safety measures necessary for proper tooth movement, and because of this present a higher risk to your child’s teeth. These problems include:

  • No Oversight: When you work closely with your dentist, they can ensure that your child’s oral health is in good hands. They can offer you multiple treatment options for your child that online retailers can’t provide, and when providing these procedures can offer safety and assurance that the procedures are performed correctly.
  • High Risk of Damage: Mail-in orthodontics tend to pose a higher risk of damage to the teeth, gums, and jawline due to this lack of oversight. When placed, they can move the teeth too quickly or place too much pressure along the jawline, increasing the risk of traumatic tooth damage and jaw pain.
  • More Costs Overtime: Because of this lack of oversight and high risk of damage, the costs of repairing that damage to your child’s oral health can be more costly than the initial treatment. Despite their advertised low costs and fast solutions, these devices pose more costs because they can be used incorrectly by patients.

Visit Your Pediatric Dentist First For Treatment Options

Because of these risks, it’s important for parents seeking out solutions to visit their dentists first before moving forward with any treatments. By visiting your pediatric dentist or orthodontist, they can provide you with safe, effective solutions for tooth alignment and protect your child’s teeth from traumatic injury, decay, and other oral diseases. When you work with your dentist, they can help monitor your child’s progress in safe steps and provide your children with the tools they need to continue their oral care into adulthood.