Why Paedodontics?

A message by the Previous President of the Paedodontic Society of South Africa – Dr. Janet Lynn Gritzman B.A. B.D.S. (Wits)

The Paedodontic Society of S.A. consists of dentists who have a special interest, love for, and expertise in treating and caring for infants, children, adolescents and patients with special health care needs.

Children are not just small adults. The primary teeth are anatomically and physiologically different from adult teeth. Children are emotionally and intellectually different to adults. Young children, pre-teens and teenagers have different psychological needs and expectations therefore they need to be treated in a different manner.

The early experiences that a child has in the dental chair will profoundly influence his future attitude towards his oral health in general and dental treatment in particular. The Paediatric dentist is aware of all these issues.

They are trained to:

  • Promote feelings of trust and confidence in the child patient.
  • Help the child patient to feel good about visiting the dentist.
  • Teach the child patient to care for his/her teeth.
  • Detect and treat dental caries.
  • Guide dental growth and development.
  • Avoid future dental problems.

Because of their special interest and commitment they are able to provide the most up to date treatment options.

Parents are wise to choose a dentist who has an interest in paedodontics to treat their children.

Projects

Branemark Institute

Our Vision
To be instrumental in curing oral disease in the underprivileged children of our country.

Our Motivation
We as Dentists, who have a special love and interest in children, and who (most us) have lived, been educated and practiced in South Africa, strongly feel the need to give something back and help the less privileged with the skills we have.

Our Plan 
To give our time and expertise and to involve other role players who have the finance and infrastructure to support our project

Our Beginning
The launch of our Outreach Program was on the 26th November 2010 at the PI Branemark Institute in Rivonia, Sandton.  This is a training facility and research centre of excellence that houses state of the art equipment. The children undergo screening and receive polishing, fluoride treatments, restorations and extractions as needed. Healthy, delicious snacks and water are provided for them. We also encourage the children to look after their teeth, eat healthy food, drink water and be hygienic, eg wash hand regularly.

Chantell and her team from Wright Millners have been with us right from the beginning. Not only have they sponsored all the materials – they have been incredibly helpful in assisting us, and play an unmissable role in this project.

Since 2010, we have seen over 800 children!  The continuous educational input in the specific school that we help, has reported that the children have become more conscious of dental health.  We have also seen, over the years, that these children have less and less cavities and tooth problems!

We have also helped children from the Golang School in Zandspruit, Banakekeleni Orphanage, children from the Smile Foundation, etc.

Invitation!

We invite you to join us in this great project! Come and give some of your time and expertise to these underprivileged children – it is so heart-warming to see their smiles and to know we make a difference in their lives!

Contact!

Dr Marietjie Weakley

drmw@dental-ladies.co.za

+27 79 755 3810

+27 11 475 0572/3

Articles

For Parents
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Are You Feeding Your Kids Tooth-Friendly Foods

Dr Marietjie Weakley BChD(Pret) dipOdont(UWC) As parents we all try to get our children to eat snacks and lunches that are good for their growing bodies and teeth.  This can be a daunting task – with their friends eating sugary and starchy junk food!  Advertising in…

Can You Reverse Tooth Decay?

Dr. Stephan Horwitz (BDS(Wits)) Chewing sugar free gum for 20 minutes after meals and snacks has been shown to significantly reverse early signs of tooth decay. Stimulated saliva contains a higher concentration of the same types of calcium, phosphate and hydroxyl ions that occur normally…

Children’s Orthodontics

Dr. Anna-Paula de Freitas Concerns of Parents and their growing children: Signs or habits that may indicate the need for an early orthodontic examination: – Teeth that meet abnormally or not at all Jaws and teeth that are out of proportion to the rest of…

Dental Hypnosis and Children

Dr Tony Widmonte BDS(Wits) Hypnosis in dentistry is not widely used today but in the hands of a trained and experienced Dentist or Hypnotherapist its advantages can be quite profound. Children usually make excellent hypnotic subjects. They have such wonderful imaginations that you can easily…

Does My Child Suffer From Bruxism

Dr Sameera Yusufmia (Bchd, Dip Clin Dent) Bruxism is defined as the involuntary grinding of teeth especially at night. It results in wear of tooth surfaces due to tooth to tooth contact i.e. attrition. How can I check? You will either notice the noise created by the child grinding…

Fissure Sealant

Dr. Stephan Horwitz (BDS(Wits)) A fissure sealant is a resin which is placed in the grooves and fissures on the biting surfaces of molar and premolar teeth in order to form a protective barrier in areas where the end bristles of a toothbrush cannot reach.…

Mouthguards (Updated 2010)

Dr. Bradley Selvan BDS(Wits) Dental injuries are the most common type of orofacial injury sustained during participation in sports; the majority of these dental injuries are preventable. A sportsman/woman is 60 times more likely to sustain damage to the teeth when notwearing a protective mouthguard. The…

Oral Hygeine For Children

Dr Janet Gritzman BA, BDS(Wits), P.D.D.(PTA)Dip Odont Endo(PTA), Dipl.Dent (Conscious Sedation & Pain Control)(UWC) Why is it important to clean my baby’s mouth and teeth? Cleaning a baby’s mouth and teeth is important for the preservation of healthy teeth and gums, and maintaining the general health…

The Dental Check-up

Dr Janet Gritzman BA, BDS(Wits), P.D.D.(PTA)Dip Odont Endo(PTA), Dipl.Dent (Conscious Sedation & Pain Control)(UWC) At what age should a child have his/her first dental check-up? Early visits to the dentist have been strongly recommended to help reduce the number of infants and children who suffer from…

The Importance of Baby Teeth

Dr Tony Widmonte BDS(Wits) There are a lot of Moms and Dads out there who were unfortunately never taught by their parents the importance of baby or as we dentists call them “deciduous” teeth. So when their children get teeth its an attitude of: “ What’s all…

Thumb-Sucking and Tips on Breaking This Habit, Eventually

Dr. Sameera Yusufmia It’s always wonderful to watch adoring parents gaze with pride at their newly-born sucking his/her thumb. This self soothing habit gives intense joy to the little ones and us as dentists have recognised and accepted this, hands down! Sadly though, this cute…

Treatment Options for Nursing Bottle Caries

Dr Geoffrey Melman BDS MSc(Dent)(Witwatersrand) Speciality in Paediatric Dentistry (U.K.) The premature loss or unsightly appearance of grossly decayed primary anterior teeth (nursing bottle caries) fig. 1 (“baby” or “milk” teeth) may physically handicap, embarrass and psychologically traumatise a young child.1,2,3,4 Left untreated, decayed teeth…

What Should I Do If A Child’s Tooth Is Knocked Out

Dr. Bradley Selvan BDS(Wits) The incidence of dental trauma, to a child’s front teeth (usually upper teeth) has increased over the last few years, due to accidents, sport related injuries and violence. Protruded upper incisors and insufficient lip closure may be predisposing factors. Knocked out…

What Should I Do If My Child Has Toothache

Dr Janet Gritzman BA, BDS(Wits), P.D.D.(PTA)Dip Odont Endo(PTA), Dipl.Dent (Conscious Sedation & Pain Control)(UWC) Rinse the mouth with warm salt water. Place a cold compress on the face if it is swollen. Give the child paracetamol (Panado) for pain. Do Not – place asprin on the…

Xylitol – The Sweet Truth

Dr Janet Gritzman BA, BDS(Wits), P.D.D.(PTA)Dip Odont Endo(PTA), Dipl.Dent (Conscious Sedation & Pain Control)(UWC) Most children have a sweet tooth. They prefer to eat sweets rather than any other healthy alternative. While artificial sweeteners are sometimes recommended to help keep kids away from sugar, not every…

For Dentists

Conscious Sedation in Dentistry

Prof. James Roelofse (Head: Anaesthesiology and Sedation – University of the Western Cape Visiting Professor in Anaesthesiology – University College London, London, UK ) The provision of adequate pain and anxiety control is an integral part of the practice of dentistry. The General Dental Council in…

Pediatric Sedation

Prof. James Roelofse (Head: Anaesthesiology and Sedation – University of the Western Cape Visiting Professor in Anaesthesiology – University College London, London, UK ) There are few areas in anaesthesia and sedation as controversial as the pharmacologic management of anxious/uncooperative children outside of the operating room.…

The Status of Amalgams in Pediatric Dentistry: Pros and Cons

Anna B. Fuks, C.D. (Professor, Department of Pediatric Dentistry, Hebrew University Hadassah School of Dental Medicine, Jerusalem, Israel) Silver amalgam has been used for restoring teeth for over 150 years and is still used extensively in general practice and in pediatric dentistry. However, the improvement in…

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