The Department of Paediatric Dentistry provides dental services for children including: dental assessment and treatment for children requiring management in hospital; dental care for children under general anaesthetic; emergency after hours treatment.
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Department of Paediatric Dentistry
The Department of Paediatric Dentistry is a specialist paediatric dental unit within the Women’s and Children’s Hospital that provides dental care to eligible children and adolescents from birth to 18 years of age in outpatient clinic, operating room and emergency settings. We also partner with our medical and surgical teams in the management of patients with complex medical conditions and special health care needs. We provide in-patient support for the oral health care needs of patients admitted to WCH and 24-hour emergency dental service in coordination with the Paediatric Emergency Department.
How to access this service
General dental referral requirements
- Eligible patients can be referred to our service by their oral health therapist, general dentist, paediatric dentist, general medical practitioner, paediatrician other specialist medical practitioner.
patients include children and adolescents with a significant medical history where their oral disease threatens their general health. Examples include patients with:
- Complex congenital heart disease
- Active oncology therapy
- Metabolic conditions
- Severe bleeding disorders
- Eligible patients also include children with hereditary craniofacial conditions that are eligible for the Medicare Cleft Lip and Palate Scheme.
- Eligible patients also include children and adolescents with complex dental anomalies such as ectodermal dysplasia, amelogenesis imperfecta, dentinogenesis imperfecta or oral pathology requiring specialist services.
For a detailed description of our eligibility criteria please click here [hyperlink to eligibility criteria doc]
Emergency dental referral requirements
- Children in need of emergency dental services are required to present to the Paediatric Emergency Department for triaging, assessment and referral to the dental team as appropriate.
If a medical or dental professional has a question as to whether a patient requires referral to the Paediatric Emergency Department, it is essential to call/consult with a staff member of the department on (08) 8161 7379. If you require after-hours emergency service, please contact the Women’s and Children’s Switchboard at (08) 8161 7000.
Dental treatment under general anaesthesia for patients on the South Australian Dental Service waitlist
- The Dental Department provides treatment under general anaesthesia for patients referred from the South Australian Dental Service. This waitlist is managed by the South Australian Dental Service. Upon receipt of a referral, patients will be seen for a consult and treatment planning appointment before scheduling their comprehensive dental treatment as appropriate.
Orthodontic treatment is limited to children eligible under the Medicare Cleft Lip and Palate Scheme. All eligible children or adolescents requiring orthodontic treatment must undergo assessment within the Department prior to referral for orthodontic treatment.
Transition to adult dentistry
Transition of adolescents seen at WCH Dental Department occurs at the age of 18 years to an adult health service. For patients with special health care needs, the process of transition is important to maintain a high standard of oral health care. We will help Transfer of care is facilitated to the Special Needs Unit in the Adelaide Dental Hospital, SALHN Dental service, community dental clinic or a local dentist as required.
How to make or change your appointment
Upon receipt of an eligible referral, you will be contacted to schedule your consultation visit. If you need to make a recall or change an appointment please call us on (08) 8161 7379.
Monday to Friday, 8:00am – 4:30pm
Afterhours service through the Emergency Department
LocationLevel 1, Zone B in the Good Friday Building (across from the Playdeck)
Frequently asked questions (FAQ’s)
When should I start brushing my baby’s teeth?
It is recommended that as soon as your baby’s teeth erupt you start to clean them. You can start with a damp, clean cloth and then introduce a soft toothbrush. Brushing morning and night is recommended and it is important to try to clean milk off your baby’s teeth before they sleep.
When do I start using toothpaste?
The current Australian recommendation is to start a low fluoride tooth paste at 18 months of age, however, your dental practitioner may recommend that you start using toothpaste earlier so please discuss the recommendation for your child with them.
When should my child have their first dental check-up?
It is recommended that all children are seen by a dentist to establish a dental home soon after their first tooth erupts or by 12 months of age.
You may choose to take your child to your local South Australian Dental Service clinic or a dentist in the private sector.
For further information, go to the South Australian Dental Service – Dental appointment request for children.
For information on private options visit the Australian Dental Association.
Useful websites for parents
South Australian Dental Service Website
Australasian Academy of Paediatric Dentistry
The Australian and New Zealand Society of Paediatric Dentistry
The Australian Dental Association
International Association of Paediatric Dentistry
American Academy of Paediatric Dentistry
International Association of Dental Traumatology
Australasian Cleft Lip and Palate Association Inc.
CleftPalsVic – Parent support group for Vic/SA/NT
The D3 Group – Developmental Dental Defects
The Australian Society of Orthodontics
Resources for Practitioners
We have a range of specialised staff dedicated to providing paediatric dental care of the highest quality. This includes the in house administration team, dental assistants and team of dental practitioners comprised of specialist paediatric dental and orthodontic consultants, a visiting oral surgeon, senior registrar(s), paediatric dental registrars (enrolled in a specialist training program) and dental residents.
Consultant Paediatric Dentists
- Dr Kelly Oliver (Unit Head)
- Dr Gabrielle Allen
- Dr Maria Regina (Ninna) Yuson
- Dr Richard Salmon
- Dr Sven Jensen
- Dr Miles Doddridge (OMFS)
(08) 8161 7000
(08) 8161 7880
Please address any patient referrals to our Medical Unit Head:
Dr Kelly Oliver
Department of Paediatric Dentistry
Level 1, Good Friday Building
72 King William Road
North Adelaide SA 5006