At Kids to College Pediatric Dentistry, we serve children from infancy through adolescence to “kidults.” We believe in your kids. We know it’s a privilege to participate in a child’s development and are invested in watching them grow through the years into young adults – and we love seeing them smile! We strive to provide excellent care and develop a lifelong gorgeous and healthy smile with compassion and integrity. Just as it is with horses, kids don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. With two locations, we proudly serve Littleton, Ken Caryl, Morrison, Evergreen and the 285 corridor.

Dr. Courtney College is a Board Certified Pediatric Dentist and a Diplomat of the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry. She maintains memberships with the Colorado Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, American Dental Association, Colorado Dental Association, Metropolitan Denver Dental Society, and Southwest Society of Pediatric Dentistry. Dr. Courtney College has served on the board for Kids in Need of Dentistry and has been a volunteer for that organization since she started practicing children’s dentistry and even accepts CHP+ medicaid. By way of peer recognition, Courtney has been recognized as one of 5280 Magazine’s top pediatric dentists every year since 2008!

We're so glad you found us!

We hope you will find these pages helpful, informative and fun. We offer answers to many questions that you may have regarding children’s dental health. We also invite you to come by our office with your child(ren) to meet us, take a tour, and receive a special goodie for stopping in to say hello. Please feel free to contact us with any further questions that you may have. We are truly looking forward to meeting you and your family!

Our office files electronic insurance claims on your behalf for any dental insurance plan, and we are Delta Dental Premier providers, as well as Medicaid and CHP+ providers. We accept cash, checks, Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express and CareCredit.  We can now also accept balance payments securely from this very website!  We have Spanish-speaking staff for those who need bilingual help.

Dr. Courtney College & the whole herd of us!

Over 25 Years of Smiles

and 16 Years as a 5280 Top Dentist!

kids dentist

Kids dentistry often finds itself overshadowed by general dentistry, yet it holds a special place in the hearts of families seeking not just dental care, but a nurturing environment for their children. This unique facet of dentistry shines through its gentle approach and tailored techniques designed specifically for young smiles. This distinct approach sets kids dentistry apart in the broad spectrum of dental care, offering a specialized experience that positions it as a crucial field in its own right.

Central to kids dentistry are Pediatric Dentistry, Orthodontics for Children, and Preventive Dental Care, each known for their specific benefits to children’s oral health. Not to be overlooked, Behavioral Dental Care for children stands out, providing a comforting and understanding approach for young patients. Delving deeper, each aspect of kids dentistry brings its own flavors of care, techniques, historical importance, and recommendations for establishing lifelong dental health habits.

The following sections will dive into these elements, enriching your understanding of why kids dentistry is an invaluable resource for nurturing healthy, happy smiles from an early age.

What is a kids dentist?

A kids dentist, often referred to as a pediatric dentist, specializes in the oral health care of children from infancy through their teenage years. This unique branch of dentistry is dedicated to understanding the distinct dental needs of young patients, including their developmental challenges and the behavioral aspects of dental visits. Pediatric dentists undergo extensive training beyond dental school, which equips them with the necessary skills to offer comprehensive care.

This care encompasses preventive dental health practices, diagnosis, and treatment of dental diseases, as well as the management of dental growth and development. Their expertise is pivotal in laying down the foundation for a lifetime of healthy dental habits and fostering a positive attitude towards dental care.

Why choosing the right kids dentist is crucial

Selecting the right kids dentist is paramount for several key reasons. Firstly, it ensures proper dental development during the crucial stages of a child’s growth, addressing potential problems early on. This expertise in developmental issues is vital for a child’s oral health.

Secondly, the right dentist plays a significant role in instilling good dental habits early, setting the foundation for a lifetime of healthy oral care practices. Lastly, a positive and understanding relationship with a pediatric dentist can greatly reduce dental anxiety in children, making dental visits more pleasant and less stressful. This careful selection not only supports the immediate dental health of the child but also fosters a long-term positive attitude towards dental care and overall well-being, highlighting the importance of choosing the right pediatric dentist.

Ensures proper dental development

Choosing the right kids dentist is crucial for ensuring proper dental development. Pediatric dentists, with their specialized training, are adept at identifying and addressing any developmental issues early. This proactive approach promotes healthy growth of teeth and jaws, preventing complex dental problems in the future.

Instills good dental habits early

A key benefit of a good pediatric dentist is their ability to instill good dental habits early in children. Through education and preventive care, they teach the importance of regular brushing, flossing, and overall oral hygiene. This early intervention lays the foundation for a lifetime of healthy dental practices, ensuring children grow up with strong, healthy teeth.

Reduces dental anxiety in children

Finding a kids dentist who can reduce dental anxiety in children is invaluable. Pediatric dentists excel in creating a welcoming, child-friendly environment that makes dental visits more enjoyable and less intimidating. This positive introduction to dental care is crucial in helping children view dental visits favorably, encouraging them to maintain regular dental check-ups and care without fear or hesitation.

What to look for in a kids dentist

When embarking on the search for the perfect kids dentist, there are several pivotal factors to consider. First and foremost, ensure the dentist has qualifications in pediatric dentistry. This specialized training is crucial for addressing the unique dental needs of children.

Additionally, the dental environment should be welcoming for children, creating a space where they feel comfortable and safe. This can greatly influence their attitude towards dental care. Positive feedback from other parents can also serve as a valuable indicator of the dentist’s approachability and effectiveness in treating young patients.

Lastly, a practice that incorporates engagement activities for children, such as educational games or books, can transform dental visits into enjoyable and enriching experiences. These elements, when combined, are key in ensuring your child not only receives exemplary dental care but also develops a positive and proactive attitude towards their oral health.

Qualifications in pediatric dentistry

Qualifications in pediatric dentistry are essential when choosing a kids dentist. This specialized training ensures the dentist has the expertise to address the unique dental needs and challenges of children, providing a solid foundation for their oral health from infancy through adolescence.

A welcoming environment for children

Creating a welcoming environment for children is crucial in a pediatric dental office. Spaces designed with bright colors, child-friendly decor, and engaging activities can significantly ease anxiety, transforming dental visits into positive experiences for young patients.

Positive feedback from other parents

Positive feedback from other parents acts as a valuable indicator of a pediatric dentist’s quality of care. Testimonials about a dentist’s approachability, how they manage children’s fears, and the effectiveness of their treatments can help parents make an informed choice for their child’s dental care.

Engagement activities for children

Including engagement activities for children within the dental practice is key to making dental visits both enjoyable and educational. Interactive games, educational books, or tours of the dental office can help demystify the experience for children, fostering a sense of excitement and curiosity about dental health.

How often to visit a kids dentist

Regular visits to a kids dentist are crucial for maintaining your child’s oral health. The general guideline is for children to have dental check-ups every six months. These bi-annual visits are essential for monitoring dental development, catching potential issues early, and providing preventive care to avoid more serious problems in the future.

However, the specific frequency of visits may vary based on individual needs, particularly if your child has specific dental issues that necessitate closer monitoring or follow-up treatments. Establishing a routine of regular dental visits not only aids in maintaining dental health but also reinforces the importance of oral hygiene in your child’s daily routine.

Every six months for check-ups

Children should visit a kids dentist for check-ups every six months. These routine appointments are crucial for monitoring oral health, spotting early signs of potential dental issues, and implementing preventive strategies to avert more serious problems down the line. Regular check-ups serve as the foundation for maintaining excellent oral health throughout childhood and into adulthood.

Follow-ups for specific dental issues

For children with specific dental issues, follow-up appointments may be required more frequently than the standard bi-annual visits. These targeted follow-ups enable the dentist to monitor the child’s condition closely, adjust treatment plans as necessary, and ensure effective management of any dental problems. The frequency and nature of these appointments are customized to the individual child’s needs, depending on the severity and type of dental issue being addressed.

Common issues addressed by kids dentists

Kids dentists specialize in treating a variety of common dental issues that predominantly affect children. These include cavities and tooth decay, which rank as the most prevalent dental problems among young ones due to their partiality for sugary treats and sometimes irregular oral hygiene habits. Misaligned teeth and bite problems also feature prominently, with early detection and intervention being key to averting more severe complications as the child matures.

Additionally, gum diseases, though generally more uncommon in children than in adults, necessitate swift action to prevent any harm to the developing permanent teeth. Lastly, dental injuries from falls or sports are not unusual in the active lives of children and require prompt, effective care to safeguard their oral health. Pediatric dentists are proficient in addressing these issues, ensuring the maintenance of healthy, vibrant smiles in their young patients.

Cavities and tooth decay

Cavities and tooth decay stand as prominent issues tackled by kids dentists. These conditions result from bacteria in the mouth transforming sugars into acids, which then erode tooth enamel. Key preventive measures include regular dental check-ups, diligent brushing, and the application of fluoride treatments, all aimed at preserving the oral health of young patients.

Misaligned teeth and bite problems

Misaligned teeth and bite problems can significantly impact a child’s chewing ability, speech development, and self-confidence. Pediatric dentists frequently employ braces or other orthodontic devices to correct these issues, ensuring the teeth and jaws develop correctly and functionally as the child matures.

Gum diseases and prevention

Gum diseases, though more rare in children, present a real risk to their oral health. Symptoms such as swollen, red, or bleeding gums can indicate the onset of gum disease. Preventive care focuses on consistent brushing and flossing, coupled with regular dental cleanings to eliminate plaque and tartar, effectively protecting against gum disease.

Dental injuries from falls or sports

Dental injuries from falls or sports are common in the bustling lives of children and can vary from minor chips to severe tooth loss. Kids dentists are adept at addressing these injuries, utilizing treatments like dental bonding, crowns, or tooth replacement solutions to restore the child’s dental health and smile.

Preparing your child for their first dental visit

Preparing your child for their first dental visit is essential in fostering a lifetime of positive dental experiences. Start by discussing the visit positively, portraying it as an exciting opportunity to learn about keeping their teeth healthy. Incorporating children’s books and videos about dentistry can also demystify the process, making the dental office a more familiar and less daunting place.

Moreover, choosing a time for the visit when your child is well-rested and in a cheerful mood can greatly influence their comfort level and willingness to engage during the appointment. These thoughtful preparations can help alleviate any potential apprehensions, ensuring your child’s inaugural visit to the dentist is a successful and enjoyable milestone.

Discuss the visit positively

Emphasizing the importance of discussing the visit positively with your child cannot be overstated. Present the upcoming dental appointment as an exciting journey of discovery about dental health. This positive spin helps to cultivate a sense of enthusiasm and curiosity, setting a cheerful tone for the visit.

Use children’s books and videos about dentistry

Leveraging children’s books and videos about dentistry is a highly effective strategy to prepare your child for their first dental visit. These resources introduce the concept of dental care in a fun and engaging manner, showcasing familiar characters navigating their own dental visits. This approach helps to familiarize children with what to expect, easing any apprehensions.

Choose a time when your child is rested

The significance of choosing a time when your child is well-rested for their dental appointment cannot be overstated. A child who is alert and in a positive mood is more likely to be cooperative and receptive. Scheduling the visit during a time when they are typically at their most content ensures a smoother and more enjoyable experience for both the child and the dental team.

After the dental visit

Following your child’s dental visit, it’s crucial to discuss the dentist’s recommendations positively with your child. This conversation reinforces the importance of maintaining good oral hygiene and adheres to any specific advice given. By doing so, you help instill the value of dental care in your child’s daily routine.

Scheduling the next appointment before leaving the clinic is also key, as it ensures continuity of care and keeps your child’s dental health on the right track. Moreover, encouraging and modeling good dental habits at home is essential. Demonstrating these practices yourself reinforces the lessons learned during the dental visit.

Together, these steps foster a positive dental care experience, motivating your child to uphold healthy dental practices and approach future dentist visits with confidence and ease.

Discuss the dentist’s recommendations positively

After your child’s dental visit, discuss the dentist’s recommendations positively with them. Emphasizing the benefits and importance of adhering to the dentist’s advice not only reinforces the significance of good oral hygiene but also helps your child understand why taking care of their teeth is crucial. This positive dialogue fosters a proactive approach to dental health in your child.

Schedule the next appointment

Scheduling the next appointment before you leave the dental office is a vital step in ensuring your child’s dental care continues without interruption. Regular dental check-ups are key to maintaining good oral health, and by arranging the next visit in advance, you underline the importance of consistent dental care to your child.

Encourage and model good dental habits

It’s essential to encourage and model good dental habits in your daily life. Children are greatly influenced by the actions of their parents, so demonstrating proper oral hygiene practices yourself serves as a powerful teaching tool. Engaging in brushing and flossing together transforms dental care into a shared, enjoyable activity, helping to instill healthy habits in a fun and interactive manner.

Managing dental anxiety in children

Managing dental anxiety in children is a key component of pediatric dentistry. Opting for a dentist experienced in handling anxiety can have a profound impact, as such professionals are adept at employing strategies that calm and reassure young patients. Visiting the clinic beforehand to acquaint your child with the surroundings, the dental team, and the procedures can also significantly mitigate fear and anxiety.

Furthermore, allowing your child to bring a comfort item to appointments can offer them a sense of security and familiarity. These approaches, when collectively implemented, can greatly ease dental anxiety, transforming dental visits into more positive experiences for children and promoting their willingness to engage in regular dental care without apprehension.

Choose a dentist experienced in handling anxiety

Selecting a dentist experienced in handling anxiety plays a pivotal role in ensuring a positive dental experience for anxious children. Dentists with this expertise employ gentle techniques and a compassionate approach, creating a soothing environment that makes children feel secure and understood. This careful choice can significantly diminish fear and foster a more positive perception of dental care.

Visit the clinic beforehand to familiarize your child

Visiting the clinic beforehand offers an excellent opportunity to familiarize your child with the dental environment in a relaxed and informative manner. This preliminary visit allows your child to meet the dental team, explore the office, and become acquainted with the equipment and procedures in a non-threatening context, reducing the intimidation factor of the actual appointment.

Bring a comfort item for your child

Encouraging your child to bring a comfort item, such as a beloved toy or a cozy blanket, to their dental appointment can make a world of difference in managing anxiety. This touch of home provides a tangible sense of security and comfort, easing your child’s fears and contributing to a calmer, more reassuring dental visit.

Importance of fluoride treatments

Fluoride treatments are a cornerstone of pediatric dental care, serving as a powerful preventive measure against tooth decay. By strengthening tooth enamel, fluoride creates a formidable barrier against the acids produced by oral bacteria, significantly reducing the risk of cavities. These treatments are particularly vital for children, who are more susceptible to tooth decay due to evolving oral hygiene practices and a tendency to consume sugary foods and beverages.

Pediatric dentists frequently recommend fluoride treatments as a key component of a comprehensive oral health regimen, ensuring that children’s teeth remain robust and healthy throughout their growth.

Prevents tooth decay

Fluoride treatments play a pivotal role in preventing tooth decay. By forming a protective barrier on the teeth, fluoride effectively counters the bacteria that lead to cavities. This preventive action is particularly crucial for children, ensuring their developing teeth are shielded against decay.

Strengthens tooth enamel

A significant advantage of fluoride treatments is their capacity to strengthen tooth enamel. This enhancement in enamel resilience increases resistance to acid attacks, the primary cause of tooth decay. Consequently, teeth are fortified, becoming less prone to cavities and contributing to healthier smiles in children.

Recommended by pediatric dentists

Fluoride treatments are highly recommended by pediatric dentists for their integral role in oral health maintenance. Acknowledged as a vital component of a child’s dental care routine, these treatments are endorsed by dental professionals as an effective strategy to prevent cavities and bolster the strength of tooth enamel.

The role of dental sealants

Dental sealants serve a crucial role in pediatric dentistry by offering an additional layer of protection against cavities. Specifically applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth, where cavities are most commonly found in children, sealants create a barrier that prevents food particles and bacteria from settling into the teeth’s deep crevices. This preventive measure is particularly valuable for children and teenagers, who might be more susceptible to cavities due to factors like inconsistent brushing habits and diets rich in sugars and starches.

Highly recommended by pediatric dentists, dental sealants represent a proactive approach to oral health, effectively minimizing the risk of tooth decay and contributing to the long-term well-being of children’s dental health.

Protects against cavities

Dental sealants act as a formidable barrier that protects against cavities. By covering the enamel of each tooth with a protective coating, they drastically lower the chance of tooth decay, helping to maintain the health and integrity of children’s teeth.

Applied to the chewing surfaces of back teeth

These preventive coatings are applied to the chewing surfaces of back teeth—specifically, molars and premolars. These teeth are more susceptible to cavities due to their deep crevices, which can harbor food particles and bacteria. Sealants effectively seal these grooves, creating a smoother surface that is easier to keep clean.

Often recommended for children and teenagers

Dental sealants are often recommended for children and teenagers, a demographic particularly vulnerable to cavities. This recommendation stems from the significant benefits sealants offer in terms of added protection, especially valuable as this age group’s dental hygiene habits are still being established and their diets may frequently include foods and drinks that contribute to cavity formation.