What Makes A Good Pediatric Dentist?

finding-the-right-pediatric-dentist

Dental appointments with young children are often a challenging task for many parents, especially if your child has anxiety about visiting the dentist.  You’ve probably already done your best to acclimate your young one(s) to the dentist and oral health care as a whole, but as you know yourself, it’s not a very comfortable situation and kids aren’t stupid.  They figure out pretty quick that a dentist appointment might not be a fun time and once that happens your task just became a chore.  That’s why it can make a big difference if your dentist is kid-friendly and knows how to make appointments more enjoyable (for both of you).  If yours isn’t already, it might be a good idea to switch to a pediatric or children’s dentist if you have young children.

Tips and considerations for choosing a great pediatric dentist

Finding a children’s dentist is a good idea but sometimes it’s easier said than done, especially if you’ve never been to the dental clinic before and you don’t know what you’re looking for.  To help make choosing easier, we’ve created a list of some great traits your pediatric dentist should have so keep reading.

A child friendly atmosphere

Children are very sensitive to energies and to their surroundings.  With that in mind your dentist office should feel like a comfortable and inviting place.  That means a clean, well lit, and cozy waiting room that has some toys or other entertainment for youngsters.  Last thing you want is a bored child that it is getting impatient adding to the stress of the actual dentist visit.  Keep them occupied so they can keep their mind off the anxiety inducing appointment itself.  The right atmosphere can make a big difference in setting the tone for the whole appointment.

Your dentist and their staff should love kids

Not everyone is good with kids, and it usually shows.  That doesn’t mean they’re untrustworthy or a bad dentist – they just aren’t 100% comfortable.  In this case, it does mean that they might not be the right dentist for your family though, because you need people that are friendly, engaging and know how to keep kids happy during the visit.

How does your dentist communicate with your child?

Does your dentist and the staff make your kids laugh or smile?  That’s a great sign you’ve got a good fit but it’s just the start.  Your dentist should be able to voice their concerns to your kids in a friendly manner, but so they understand.  That’s not to say your dentist should lay everything out and scare your child, or use a lot of industry jargon, but they do need to convey the importance of dental care to your kids in a fun way.

The dental office should be equipped for younger patients

A child’s mouth and the size of their body are obviously much smaller than those of an adult.  This means that your dentist will need smaller tools to work properly inside your child’s mouth without doing damage.  Even things like the chair and rinsing station should be child accessible so that small kids are comfortable during the appointment.  Also, you know the loot bag you get at the end of an appointment, the one with a toothbrush, some floss, a travel toothpaste and maybe a lollipop (for the kids)?  A well-equipped pediatric dentist will have that with kid sized items instead of the adult ones.  When you visit a proper childrens dentist you’ll see the obvious difference in equipment.

In conclusion

When choosing a pediatric dentist for your family, the aspect that should be most important is patient care.  This means chairside manner, positive attitude, ability to talk to kids and the patience to do so.  These traits should extend to the dental staff as well because your child will be in contact with more than just your dentist.  The dentist and staff should also mesh well with the you, the parent, so that you feel comfortable and relaxed about having the team take care of your family’s oral health.  Good pediatric dentists are out there, just take your time and make the best choice.

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