Children have particular dental needs that are distinctive from the dental needs of an adult.
Paediatric Dentistry is an age-defined speciality that provides comprehensive preventive and therapeutic oral health care for infants, children, adolescents and those with special health care needs.
A Paediatric Dentist is a specialist dentist who, in addition to holding a Bachelor of Dental Surgery, has completed a minimum of a further three-years of specialist training in a post-graduate program focused on infants, children and adolescents. A Paediatric Dentist is recognised by the Australian Health Practitioners Regulation Agency (AHPRA) and the Dental Board of Australia as a specialist dental practitioner.
Your Child’s First Visit
When should I schedule the first visit?
The Australian Academy of Paediatric Dentistry recommends the first dental visit occur around the time of your child’s first birthday. Dental decay rates in young children in Australia has been increasing and early assessments are aimed at reducing the risk of dental decay. You can make the first visit to the dentist enjoyable and positive. Your child should be informed of the visit and told that the dentist and his/her staff will explain all procedures and answer any questions they may have. You may also want to consider taking your child along to your dental check-up to familiarise them and make them more comfortable in a dental setting.
We would appreciate if you could arrive 5 minutes prior to your child’s appointment time to complete the patient questionnaire form.
Given our patients are children, it can happen that we may not be running on time. Every effort is made in our practice to be punctual so that we can minimise the time your child will be waiting. We are happy for you to contact the practice prior to your child’s appointment and we can inform you about the waiting time.
What should we expect during the first visit?
As a practice specialising in paediatrics, the focus of your child’s first visit is to meet your child and you. The appointment will allow us to provide a detailed assessment of their dental status as well as suggest any necessary treatment or advice. Most of our patients are referred by general dentists, specialist dentists, paediatricians, general medical practitioners, medical specialists or other health care workers. In general, we do not provide any treatment at the initial consultation appointment other than for specific emergency situations. The consultation appointment is aimed to assess your child’s dental needs. Behaviour assessment, clinical assessment and often radiographs will be performed, which will allow us to develop a plan for your child’s dental care. All children are individual and special so we believe dental care should also be tailored to their needs. At Adelaide Paediatric Dentistry, we pride ourselves on providing the best possible care for your child. Some children will require advice only, while others will need more complex care. Regardless of the care required, spending the time to determine what is best for your child is a key principle for Adelaide Paediatric Dentistry.
Special Care Patients
We are committed to providing the “dental home” for children with special needs so that they can receive excellent oral care in a loving environment. We look forward to meeting you and your child to create an optimal dental experience. We offer a wide scope of treatment modalities which range from short visits for familiarisation, multiple regular visits (Steps to Success Program) to comprehensive treatment under general anesthesia. Notify us if your child has any special needs when you schedule an appointment time as this will assist us in preparation of the initial visit.
Steps to Success Program
With the increase in diagnosis of autistic spectrum disorders (ASDs), we recognize the importance of tailoring the dental experience to accommodate children with these characteristics. For many of our ASD patients, we have found that the Steps to Success Program is a wonderful introduction to the dental office. This repetitive tasking approach helps your child develop a sense of trust and rapport with us through the use of several short visits that make our office a familiar, friendly place. Steps that may seem small such as merely sitting in the dental chair or “putting hands on tummy” or “legs out straight” are actually significant accomplishments! Our expectations will be adapted to each child’s tolerance level. Some children may achieve this in only a few visits, while others will in five or six. In order to keep the focus on your child, we usually recommend that siblings and friends do not accompany you to appointments.
Parental involvement plays an important part at your child’s involvement. This may often include taking photographs or video footage which we encourage to assist in future visits. Our approach at your child’s visit will help to attain a high level of comfort in the dental environment and enjoying a lifetime of good oral health.
Our practice policy is that we require payment on the day of the visit. We accept cash, personal cheques, debit and credit cards (AMEX and Diners not accepted) and direct deposits. Payment of treatment that your child requires will be discussed at the consultation appointment and you will be advised of the cost.
We offer a claiming method called HICAPS which is directly linked to your health insurance provider as a convenience to you. This makes an efficient and hassle-free method of payment at your child’s dental treatment. To offer this service you are required to bring in your health fund card at every appointment. Following the consultation appointment you will be given a treatment plan for your child’s dental needs which will enable you to contact your health fund to inquire about your health rebates.
Medicare provides a service for some dental treatments that can be claimed under certain schemes. We accept the Cleft Lip and Palate Scheme and the Child Benefit Dental Scheme.