Common terms you should know about before you visit the Paediatric Dentist

Paediatric dentistry is a branch of dental science that deals with the dental problems and treatments of children and teenagers. While consulting a pediatric dentist it is not uncommon to stress about different terminologies designated for different treatment approaches. Hence, it is always wise to read up a little beforehand and gain knowledge so you know what the dentist is talking about.

Here is a complete list of dental terms you must know before a visit to the pediatric dentist. 

A

Abscess 

It is an infection caused by caries, trauma or a gum infection which results in the formation of pus within the tooth.

Anaesthesia 

A drug is injected into the gums to help relieve the pain before the dentist starts a dental treatment.

Apex

The root of the tooth is also the most common site for abscess formation.

B

Bridge 

Consists of one or more artificial teeth which can be attached to your adjacent teeth.

Bruxism 

The clenching or grinding of teeth, most commonly while sleeping. 

C

Calculus 

Plaque buildup that that can form on neglected or prone teeth, also known as tartar.

Canine 

The pointy teeth are just behind the laterals. 

Caries 

Caries is another name for cavities or decayed teeth.

Cavity 

A tiny hole in the tooth is caused by decay. This cavity is often cleaned and filled with a filling material.

Crown 

An artificial cap made of porcelain or metal is used to cover the tooth.

D

Decalcification 

Refers to the loss of calcium from the teeth. This can lead to brittle and chipped teeth. 

Dentures

A set of artificial teeth is often given to children who lose their teeth prematurely to maintain the space. 

Digital Radiograph

An image produced by projecting radiation. Radiographs can be of different types including bitewing, periapical and occlusal. 

E

Endodontist

A dentist who specialises in the treatments of dental pulp including root canals. 

Enamel

The white surface of the tooth above the gum level.

Extraction 

The removal of a tooth or teeth.

Eruption

The process in which the tooth comes through the gum surface in the oral cavity. 

F

Flouride

A chemical used to strengthen the enamel. It also prevents chances of cavities and can be taken both systematically and can be applied in topical form.

Filling

A mixture of chemicals is used to fill the cavities. It is available in different forms.

G

Gingivitis 

Refers to the inflammation of gums around the roots of the teeth. 

Gums 

The firm flesh that surrounds the roots of the teeth extends to the floor of the mouth.

I

Impacted Tooth 

It is a tooth that sits sideways below the gum line. The condition often occurs with wisdom teeth often requiring extraction due to a lack of its ability to erupt in the oral cavity.

Incisor 

Incisors are flat, sharp-edged teeth in the front of the mouth. 

L

Lateral 

Lateral are small flat teeth located adjacent to the central

N

Night Guard 

A night guard is a plastic mouthpiece worn at night. It prevents grinding of the teeth; also used to treat TMJ problems. 

Nitrous Oxide

Sedative gas is mostly used in paediatric dentistry. It is mixed with oxygen and inhaled through a small mask that fits over the nose to produce a calming effect to relax children.

P

Pedodontist 

A pedodontist is also known as a pediatric dentist who specializes in the treatment of

children’s teeth.

Periodontist 

A dentist specializing in the treatment of gum disease.

 

Plaque 

A sticky buildup of acids and bacteria causes tooth decay.

Posterior Teeth 

The teeth are located in the back of the mouth.

Primary Teeth 

A primary tooth is a term used for “baby teeth”.

Prosthodontist 

A dentist specializing in the restoration and replacement of missing teeth or severely damaged teeth. 

Pulpotomy

Partial removal of pulpal tissue in cases of infection.

Pulpectomy

Complete removal of the pulpal tissues. It is a treatment commonly done in children. 

Pulp Cap

Filling material is used to cover the small area of the exposed dental pulp.

R

Root 

The portion of the tooth below the gum line is located inside the bone. 

Root Canal 

A process which requires the removal of infected pulp followed by the filling of the roots and crown to seal the cavity.

S

Sealant 

It is a plastic coating applied to teeth to prevent decay. Used most commonly for children.

Secondary Teeth 

Secondary teeth are a set of permanent teeth.

Spacers 

Removable or fixed appliances designed to prevent tooth movement. They’re generally placed after extraction or in cases of teeth that were missing from birth. This allows new teeth to come into place and keeps the bite even (also called “space maintainers”).

Remembering these terms might sound a little overwhelming. However, getting to know atleast a handful of these can always do the trick. 



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