Pediatric dentistry is an age-defined specialty that provides both primary and comprehensive preventive and therapeutic oral health care for infants and children through adolescence, including those with special health care needs.


To become a pediatric dental specialist, a dentist must satisfactorily complete a minimum of 2 years in an advanced education program beyond the DDS/DMD training. Pediatric dentists provide care, conduct research, and teach in a variety of clinical and institutional settings, including private practice, hospitals and public health. They work in coordination with other health care providers and members of social disciplines for the benefit of children.

Pediatric dentistry encompasses a variety of disciplines, techniques, procedures, and skills that share a common basis with other specialties, but are modified and adapted to the unique requirements of infants, children, adolescents, and those with special health care needs.


By being an age-specific specialty, pediatric dentistry encompasses disciplines such as behavior guidance, care of medically and developmentally compromised and disabled patients, supervision of orofacial growth and development, caries prevention, sedation, pharmacological management, and hospital dentistry, as well as other traditional fields of dentistry. These skills are applied to the needs of children throughout their ever-changing stages of development and to treating conditions and diseases unique to growing individuals.