Dr. Darren Tong and dental assistant Lisa treating a relaxed patient.


Your child’s very first children’s dentist appointment may include:

• A review of nutrition and the diet of your child

• A dialogue regarding pacifiers, thumb sucking, and other non-dietary oral habits

• A look at injury prevention and dental trauma deterrence

• A demonstration of normal tooth growth patterns and oral development

• An analysis of risk factors for decay

• And anything pertaining to symptoms or issues regarding your child’s teeth and stage of development

You may be asking, can I just go to my regular dentist, or should I go to a pediatric dentist?

Children’s dentists have the same training as regular dentists, except that they will have gone through an additional two-to-three years of specialized children’s dental training after they have already finished dental school. 

This allows them the best knowledge, understanding and skill for the oral care of children between the ages of infancy and adolescence.

Children require different approaches to their dental health.

They are different in their needs and behaviors than adults because they are still going through the growth and development process and can still take many preventative actions to avoid future problems.

It’s up to you, but the pediatric dentist is the professional who is best qualified to meet the oral health needs of children.

Unfortunately, many parents wait until the child has pain or visible symptoms of disease before they bring their child to the dentist.

This often causes anxiety, worry and apprehension from the parents.

“Who do I choose?”

“Where can I find a dentist?”

It’s important to have a dentist that you know and are familiar with.

Someone you have seen before the urgent appointment is needed.

Other than for checkups and first consultations, you need to have a pediatric dentist’s available and their number handy, in case of oral health emergencies.

There are many different forms of oral health emergency, and though many have to do with teeth, this is not always the case.

It could be a knocked out tooth, a bitten or cut lip, or something as simple as a toothache.

All of these call for a pediatric dentist who you’re familiar with, you trust, and is ready to care for your child.

Your child’s teeth and health are irreplaceable.

Just as it’s important to have a pediatrician, you must have your pediatric (children’s) dentist on call and ready to serve you when needed.

This is all starts with a first visit.

If you would like more information, call the office of Washington Dental Associates at 201.384.2425 or visit their website at http://www.washingtondentalnj.com and look for the tab “Children’s Corner.”


Dr. Darren Tong of Washington Dental Associates is a children’s dentist and has treated children for over 18 years in the Filipino-American community.

He can answer any questions you may have.

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