When it comes to your kids, you want the best, and a dentist is no exception. There are a lot of things to consider when choosing the best pediatric dentist for your son or daughter, and the process can seem a little overwhelming when you are starting out.
It's always a good idea to ask local friends and family members who they recommend, and take the time to read online reviews as well. Even if doing these things doesn't help you pick the exact dentist you want to go with, it should help you narrow down the choices.
Once you've reduced the list of possible pediatric dentists, it's time to get picky about what you need and expect from your child's tooth specialist. After all, it will be he or she that is protecting your son's or daughter's smile for many years to come.
Here are some tips of choosing the best pediatric dentist for your family:
1. Ask for a Referral from Your Pediatrician
Since you trust your pediatrician with your child's health, ask him or her if they have any pediatric dentist recommendations. For convenience, you may even be able to find a dentist that works in the same office building or medical center as your pediatrician, making appointments a breeze.
2. Inquire About Education
Before settling on the perfect dentist, interview several office or dental assistants by telephone to find out if their practice will educate your child on proper dental care. Proper education on how to care for teeth, brushing and flossing demonstrations, and what foods and beverages to avoid will set your child up for a lifetime of healthy teeth.
It's also important that they speak to you about how to handle the different stages of teeth, from baby to permanent, so that you know what to expect. This education will come in especially handy if this is your first child.
3. Check for Updated Technology
If you can, try to tour a few pediatric dentists' offices to see how up-to-date their facilities are. Check to see if they are using modern technology, and ask them about what type of procedures they use for x-rays and other screenings.
It's also important to know what kind of pain control methods and sedatives they use, especially if you're adverse to a specific type, such as dental nitrous oxide, otherwise known as "laughing gas." If you don't want a specific medication used on your child, make sure they will agree to other options.