The Department of Dentistry at Boston Children's Hospital is one of the largest pediatric dentistry services providers in New England. We treat more than 29,000 patients each year, caring for toddlers, young children, adolescents, and some adults with special health care needs.
Nearly 60 percent of our patients have at least one special health care need, including autism spectrum disorder, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, heart disease, bleeding disorders, and childhood cancer. Our team is experienced with caring for patients with special needs and anxiety. To ensure they feel as comfortable as possible during their visit, we take the time to earn their trust and listen to the concerns and perspectives of the parents.
Our team includes pediatric dentists as well as dental specialists in:
We care for patients with a wide range of conditions: from common ones — such as tooth decay, gum disease, crowding, and chipped teeth — to serious conditions that require complex treatment, such as cleft lip and cleft palate, teeth knocked out by injury, and tooth infections. We offer sedation for healthy patients who have anxiety and general anesthesia in the operating room for patients with special needs, medical complexities, and extensive dental treatment needs. We can also help your child with orthodontic treatment, working with them through the process of fitting and adjusting braces, clear aligners, and retainers.
We serve patients from city neighborhoods such as Allston, Brighton, Dorchester, South Boston, Mattapan, Roslindale, Hyde Park, Chinatown, Roxbury, Jamaica Plain, Mission Hill, Charlestown, East Boston, the South End, and the North End. We also treat patients from the Greater Boston area and all over Massachusetts: Brookline, Newton, Wellesley, Milton, Waltham, Cambridge, Arlington, Chelsea, Everett, North Shore communities, South Shore towns and cities, and all points north, south, and west of Boston.
Because dental care is a lifelong process that you and your child will experience every day, you will probably have questions along the way. We have an abundance of online resources — tips on tooth brushing, how to handle tooth trauma, what to expect at a dental surgery appointment — that will hopefully answer your questions. (But don’t hesitate to also directly ask us questions.)
Combining science, technology, and compassion
Our clinical service always aims to provide your child compassionate and effective care. We base that standard on our collective experience, scientific knowledge, and technological expertise.
Specialists across Boston Children’s centers and departments work together to ensure your child benefits from the most thorough and streamlined care. If your child has a cleft palate, for example, a specialized team — including dentists, plastic surgeons, and speech-language pathologists — is put together to conduct the surgical and rehabilitation process.
Developing a new generation of dentists
Our pediatric dental residency program is designed to build a strong foundation of general pediatric dental education and training in the care of infants, children, adolescents, and individuals with special health care needs, including patients with medical complexities. We prepare our residents to practice in academic institutions and community settings.
Paving new roads with pediatric dentistry research
Our department’s research and innovation initiatives push for significant scientific discovery while maintaining practical relevance to dental practice. One such effort led our orthodontics team to study how braces change a child’s smile. We found that orthodontics and patients prefer a smile where the arch of the upper teeth parallels the lower lip. We now strive to create a “smile arc” for our patients.
Related programs and services
Patients benefit from specialized care provided by specialists from the Department of Dentistry as well as those from related programs and services who treat conditions connected to oral health. This level of coordination ensures your child receives seamless comprehensive care.
Visit our programs and services page to learn more.