Can a Pediatric Dentist Treat Adults? – Beaumont Guide

Our blog
A vibrant, colorful waiting area for kids in an orthodontic office

When you think of a pediatric dentist, you probably imagine a dental office filled with children’s books, toys, and brightly colored walls. However, you might wonder if these dentists also see adults. The short answer is yes, under certain conditions. In this blog, we’ll explore when it’s appropriate for an adult to visit a pediatric dentist and what benefits it might hold.

What Defines a Pediatric Dentist?

Pediatric dentists specialize in caring for children’s teeth, gums, and mouths. To become a pediatric dentist, one must complete dental school plus two additional years of residency training in dentistry for infants, children, teenagers, and children with special needs. 

This training focuses on the unique dental health issues that young patients face, but also equips pediatric dentists with skills that can benefit adult patients in some situations.

Their training helps them create a calm and welcoming atmosphere for their patients, which can be particularly comforting for adults who experience dental anxiety. Additionally, their expertise in managing smaller mouths with gentle techniques can be beneficial for adults with certain physical or developmental challenges.

Legal and Professional Scope of Pediatric Dentistry

Legally, pediatric dentists are qualified to treat patients of all ages. Their license in dentistry does not restrict them to a specific age group, although their practice is typically focused on children. 

Professional guidelines suggest that pediatric dentists can accept adults as patients, especially those with special healthcare needs or those who have been under their care since childhood.

In a community like Beaumont, where familiarity and comfort with healthcare providers are valued, knowing that your pediatric dentist can continue to see adult patients can ease the transition from adolescent to adult care without changing dental practitioners.

Benefits of Adults Seeing a Pediatric Dentist

Many adults choose to stay with their pediatric dentist into adulthood for several reasons. For those who started seeing their pediatric dentist in childhood, the long-standing relationship can make dental visits less stressful. Adults with special needs, particularly those who are already comfortable with their pediatric dentist’s office and staff, may find it easier to continue their care where their specific needs are well-understood and met.

Pediatric dentists are also adept at handling patients who need a little extra patience and care, which can be a benefit for any adult who feels anxious about dental visits. Their offices are typically designed to create a calming and positive environment, which can make dental care a more pleasant experience for anxious adults.

Considerations for Adults in Pediatric Settings

While there are benefits, there are also considerations for adults thinking about seeing a pediatric dentist. Pediatric dental offices are designed with children in mind. This means the decor and size of dental equipment might not be ideal for all adults. Additionally, the office environment, often lively and colorful, might not appeal to everyone.

…the office environment, often lively and colorful, might not appeal to everyone.

Privacy can be another concern since pediatric offices are usually set up to accommodate families with multiple children being seen at the same time. Adults might find these settings less private than a general dentist’s office, which could affect their comfort level during visits.

When Should Adults Transition to General Dentists?

Deciding when to transition from a pediatric dentist to a general dentist is a personal decision, but there are some common considerations. As adults develop more complex dental needs, such as issues related to aging teeth, a general dentist, who routinely handles a wide range of adult dental issues, might be more suitable.

General dentists are equipped to deal with the broader spectrum of oral health issues that typically emerge in adulthood, including periodontal disease, the restoration of dental implants, and cosmetic dentistry, which are less commonly managed in pediatric settings.

For adults in Beaumont, transitioning might also depend on logistics such as location, availability of services, and insurance coverage, which might be more suited to a general dental practice. It’s essential to discuss these factors with your pediatric dentist to plan the best time and approach for transitioning to ensure continuous and appropriate dental care.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can adults visit pediatric dentists for all types of dental treatments?

While pediatric dentists are trained to perform most dental procedures, their equipment and office setup might be more suitable for children. For specialized adult treatments like crowns, bridges, and implants, it’s advisable to visit a general dentist.

How do pediatric dental fees for adults compare to those of general dentists?

Pediatric dentists typically have similar fee structures to general dentists for comparable services. However, fees can vary based on the practice and the specific needs of the patient. It’s always a good idea to discuss costs upfront to avoid surprises.

Are there any psychological benefits for adults who continue with their childhood pediatric dentist?

Yes, adults who experience dental anxiety may find comfort in continuing with a pediatric dentist they know and trust. The familiar setting can reduce stress and make dental visits more manageable.

What should adults consider before choosing a pediatric dentist for their care?

Adults should consider the pediatric dentist’s experience with adult patients, the suitability of the office environment, and the type of dental issues they need to manage. It’s also important to ensure that the dentist can accommodate the physical size and dental care complexity that adults present compared to children.

Is it common for pediatric dentists to treat adults, or is it a rare practice?

Treating adults in a pediatric setting is not the norm, but it is not uncommon either. Many pediatric dentists are willing to continue seeing their patients who have aged out of childhood, particularly those with special needs or those who have not found a suitable general dentist. The practice varies widely depending on individual circumstances and the dentist’s policy.


Pediatric dentists in Beaumont can indeed treat adults under certain conditions. While they are equipped to provide continuous care to those with special needs or long standing patient relationships, adults should consider their specific dental needs, comfort, and the suitability of the pediatric setting as they age. Discussing your options with your dentist will ensure that you receive the best possible care tailored to your needs. Whether you choose to stay with your pediatric dentist or transition to a general dentist, the most important thing is to continue regular dental visits and take good care of your oral health.

Scroll to Top
Request An Appointment

Fill out the form below to schedule a visit with us.