Ok, so we all know that it is important for us adults to be finding the top cosmetic dentists for our various cosmetic dentistry procedures, but what about our kids? Do they tag along to the cosmetic dental clinic and sit for a cleaning as you undergo laser teeth whitening treatment? Probably not. It would be best to take your kids to pediatric dentists.
Research shows that roughly 35 million Americans don’t have a single tooth, while another 178 million are missing at least one. Do you want your child to end up like this? Again, probably not.
About Pediatric dentists: Pediatric dentists specialize in working with children’s oral cavity (teeth, gums, etc.). They understand how their mouth develops and the stages of development. They will be trained in child psychology as well as having completed two to three years of training after dental school.
These dentists will also instill proper oral hygiene in your child to prevent cavities. Research shows that nearly 100% of adults have dental cavities worldwide, but if preventative measures are taken into account as children are still young, this number has the potential to decrease.
What to expect: Aside from having plenty of hands-on experience with children after dental school, you can expect a very welcoming staff, a bright, cheerful office, toys in the waiting room, and tooth-brushing equipment kids will actually want to use.
Assessing the office: Pediatric dentists are no emergency dentists; they will be patient and compassionate. However, they may not be cheap dentists either — but they will be well worth the price in order to prevent tooth decay and cavities in your child.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself when visiting a potential candidate’s office:
- Does the dentist have any specialized training or certifications?
- Is the office set up for children? Here, look for books, toys, a TV, bright atmostphere
- How does the office handle emergencies? Do they have an answering service for after hours, or do they have someone on call?
- Is this particular office close to home, work, and my child’s school?
- What types of payment do they accept? What medical plans do they take?
It is important to understand that not every area will have a practicing pediatric office, but it can’t hurt to try your best to look for one. Ask parents, neighbors, coworkers, friends and family if they have any recommendations for pediatric dentists. Pharmacies and your general practitioner may also have a few leads. Looking online for dental offices is also another option (and should probably be tapped into first). More on this topic.