Division of Pediatric Dentistry
The Division of Pediatric Dentistry seeks to significantly improve the health and general well-being of infants, children and adolescents by comprehensively preparing competent individuals for the practice of pediatric dentistry in private, hospital-based and/or academic settings, providing high quality oral health care to the children of the Washington Heights-Inwood area of New York City, and engaging in community activities, scholarly activity, research, and outreach programs.
Predoctoral students spend more than two years with our division learning to understand and manage children in the health care environment and provide them with the best possible dental care.
The educational experiences in pediatric dentistry are organized into several phases. The course “Preclinical Pediatric Dentistry” begins in the second semester of the second year and includes a carefully coordinated sequence of lecture-lab simulations to help students prepare for pediatric clinical care. This is followed by brief courses in “Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting", "Pediatric Patient Management", and "Nitrous Oxide Training". The last course is “Clinical Practice of Pediatric Dentistry” offered during the third and fourth years of dental school. These experiences are further supplemented via journal club meetings, rotations, and various activities related to the Pediatric Dentistry student chapter.
The pediatric experience is directed by two philosophical goals:
- To obtain optimum oral health for the child through the pursuit of excellence in contemporary preventive, interceptive, and restorative concepts
- To create a positive understanding and acceptance of dentistry on the part of the child patient.
The lectures on techniques, materials, growth and development, and behavior management are carefully coordinated with the required, assigned readings.
The Pediatric Dentistry Residency prepares postdoctoral students for active roles in clinical practice and clinical instruction in a hospital, private practice and/or academic setting.
The Division offers a Pediatric Dentistry Observership Program for third year and rising fourth year DDS Students who wish to experience life as a resident through one-week externships.
Many of our faculty are practicing dentists with ColumbiaDoctors Dentistry, the faculty practice of the College of Dental Medicine.
The Division of Pediatric Dentistry also provides dental care for children at the College of Dental Medicine's Teaching Clinics. Children aged 8 and under are treated at the Pediatric Dentistry Clinic by graduate dentists in specialty training with the assistance and supervision of College of Dental Medicine faculty specialists. Children between the ages of 8 and 13 are treated at the General and Specialty Dentistry Clinic by dental students under the supervision of faculty specialists. Children between the ages of 13 and 18 are treated by graduate dentists with the assistance and supervision of College of Dental Medicine faculty.
Our faculty are focused on promoting improved oral health in the fields of pediatric dentistry and public health through continued research efforts. Recent research conducted by students, residents and faculty includes disease management of childhood caries by providing behavioral, educational, and pharmacotherapeutic interventions with a special emphasis on early childhood populations; clinically-related research activities involving pediatric and adolescent populations and oral health of children and adults with special health care needs, health services research; and oral health disparity.
Pediatric dentistry residents and faculty participate in direct care trips abroad. Recent experiences include Global Health Externships and medical/dental missions to Cambodia, Philippines, Israel, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Burundi and the Dominican Republic. These trips are partially funded by Columbia University, world organizations, partnerships and foundations and generous sponsors.
The Pediatric Dentistry Residency has an active Alumni Association. If you are a graduate of the program (either postgraduate or residency), please visit the Alumni Association's Facebook page.