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Pediatric Robots: A New Companion For Improving Dental Care

Dental appointments can be an unnerving experience for any child, especially if it’s their first-ever appointment or they’re aware they have an upcoming procedure. Dentists who plan to work with children must have the knowledge and experience to do so effectively. While many dentists learn about pediatric care in their education, having first-hand experience is different. Thankfully, a robotics company out of Japan, Tmsuk, aims to change the way we experience pediatric dental care.

Tmsuk, The Robotics Company Aiding Pediatric Dental Education

Tmsuk has developed Pedia_Roid, a robot designed to aid pediatric dental students in gaining the experience they need before entering the field. The robot assists in preparing them by behaving like a child in a dental chair. Pedia_Roid will close its mouth randomly, fidget, and flinch at inopportune moments. While nobody would mistake the robot for an actual child, the robot’s behavior simulates how a child would respond to their care. 

Future pediatric dentists won’t be the only ones benefiting from this technology, as those who intend to work in the field as dental assistants or hygienists will also benefit. These benefits are essential, as the child will sometimes require gentle restraint by the assistants while the dentist operates. This robot imitates real-life instances where complex patients need additional support to remain still during the surgery.

Pedia_Roid is also designed to assist the dentist in practicing his skills in oral surgery. During simple procedures, it’s not uncommon for younger patients to experience shock, dips in blood pressure, and bouts of unconsciousness. In rarer cases, they might experience critical health complications during the procedure. Effectively responding to any of these instances is vital to ensuring that the care delivered is safe and effective.

One crucial focus of the development of this robot was affordability. While it benefits potential pediatric dentists, it won’t help if the price is beyond the reach of educational facilities. Tmsuk has been dedicated to providing educational locations with the ability to improve the outcomes of future patient care.

The Technology Behind The Pediatric Dental Robot

Tmsuk’s robot is the culmination of decades of robotics research and dental care advancements. Within these robots are air cylinders designed to utilize a minimum amount of pneumatic pressure while providing realistic responses when necessary. In this regard, Tmsuk utilized piezo-electric crystals to trigger a response within the robot for actions and responses. Its programming enables it to behave as childlike as possible within the necessary parameters, making it a valuable resource for future pediatric dentists. 

The future of dentistry is vague in the field of robotics, but one day dentists everywhere will perform dental treatments remotely using robots. Robotic-assisted surgeries aren’t unheard of in other medical fields, and it’s only the beginning. As the price and availability of medical-grade robots become more publicly accessible, we may start seeing them within smaller clinics like the ones near you!

Fashion comes in all forms and impacts all ages. While much of what is considered fashionable may change from year to year, healthy teeth are always in style. Americans, in particular, have valued a beautiful smile as an indicator of health and a point of beauty. Maintaining healthy teeth requires starting early in life and understanding why it starts with the primary teeth. Your primary, or baby, teeth are just temporary visitors that will ideally fall out on their own naturally. However, they’re doing important work for your smile during their stay. They ensure that your adult teeth come in straight and that you develop healthily. This is why it can be essential for ongoing oral health that your child receive orthodontic or restorative care.

Why Restorative and Orthodontic Care Is Essential For Lasting Smiles

To understand the importance of primary teeth on your child’s smile, we’ll start with how teeth support each other. Within our mouths, each tooth is part of an integrated system. Our teeth get support from their neighbors to ensure they remain straight. Further, the primary teeth help the jaw grow so that there is sufficient support and space for the adult teeth to grow correctly. When your child experiences an injury to their teeth or has primary teeth that are out of alignment, it’s essential to act fast. When they require both orthodontic and restorative care, it’s essential to know which, to begin with.

  • Realignment vs. Restoration – Restoration restores the strength and integrity of your child’s teeth. At the same time, orthodontics primarily addresses poor bite and dental misalignment. Restorative care will ensure that your child’s teeth are healthy and robust when orthodontic care moves them into their proper position.
  • Cost vs. Results – Orthodontic care is often more expensive than restorative care. While this drives some to act quickly and get their restorative care done first, some hesitate in the intent of saving for their child’s orthodontic treatment. This can be a problem as restoration care will protect the health of the teeth and ensure they are capable of withstanding orthodontic care. If only one is possible, it’s usually best to go with restorative care first.
  • Isolated vs. Combined Treatment – Some children may have advanced oral health concerns that require multiple specialists to address. In this case, it’s best to consult with all the medical professionals involved to determine the treatment order.

It’s always crucial that you corroborate with others well and focus on keeping communication happening between the specialists involved in our child’s care. Doing so will ensure that the best steps possible are being taken for your child. 

Work With Your Dental Care Provider For the Next Steps

Your dental care provider is going to be able to provide you with significant guidance for managing your child’s oral health. They’ll identify problems, suggest solutions, and develop a treatment plan to ensure everything is handled well. If you’re concerned about how best to manage your child’s oral health, contact their pediatric specialist today!