Pediatric & Young Adult
We feel strongly that positive dental experiences early in life are important for good health throughout life That’s why we focus on your child’s emotional needs as much as their oral needs – helping them feel safe and secure, explaining treatment in understandable language, encouraging their questions, providing reassurance and motivating their participation. It is our primary goal to treat your child with the highest standards of safety in the most comfortable manner.
Oral Surgery procedures most commonly performed for children and adolescents are:
Dental decay is no longer the main reason we remove primary – or “baby” – teeth. We often remove primary teeth before they fall out on their own to help encourage proper eruption of the permanent teeth and to minimize crowding. Some primary teeth need to be removed because they’ve fused to the jawbone and won’t fall out on their own. We may need to remove several baby teeth in one session, but typically we will see your child several times over years to safely remove the baby teeth in a timely manner.
Frenectomy (Treating “Tongue Tie”)
Very often, children develop extra muscle and connective tissue fibers in their mouth, which can affect the position of teeth or movement of the tongue. A group of these extra fibers is called a frenum and they are usually located under the tongue, which can prevent a full range of tongue movement and possibly affect speech, or under the upper or lower lip, which can affect the spacing between the two front teeth as well as the health of the surrounding gum tissue – hence “tongue tie.”
Releasing these fibers to eliminate these undesirable effects is a relatively straightforward office procedure. Usually performed with local anesthesia and either “Laughing Gas” (Nitrous Oxide Analgesia) or General Anesthesia, there is usually little post-operative discomfort. If “stitches” are used, they will dissolve and fall out on their own over a two-week period. Most cases are treated with a Laser which eliminates bleeding and the need for stitches.
Exposure of Impacted or Non-erupted permanent teeth
Usually because of inadequate room, it is often necessary to expose an unerupted or impacted tooth to allow it to erupt on its own. It is often necessary, in conjunction with orthodontic care, to bond a bracket onto the surface of the tooth and attach it to your braces. This allows your orthodontist to guide the unerupted tooth into its proper location.
Evaluation of growth and development of the face and jaws
We work closely with your orthodontist to evaluate your child’s mouth, jaws and face to determine if there are any growth concerns which could benefit from orthodontic or oral surgical intervention. Please see our section on Jaw Surgery for more details.
Accident, injury and trauma care
An examination of any child who has sustained any type of injury to the teeth or face is strongly recommended. When children experience injuries to their primary, or baby, teeth, the treatment is often different than for permanent teeth. One of us is on-call 24 hours per day, seven days per week should your child be injured and require our services.
Safe and Effective Sedation and Anesthesia
Your child’s safety is our primary concern. We have a wide variety of anesthetic options, which allow us to treat your child’s specific needs in the most appropriate manner. At your consultation appointment, we will review these options with you after determining the type of treatment required and assessing your child’s emotional needs.