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Choosing a Pediatric Dentist and Preparing Your Child for Their First Dental Visit

by | Nov 21, 2017

When it comes to choosing the right dentist for your child, you should choose a pediatric dentist that is experienced, knowledgeable and friendly with a welcoming and relaxing atmosphere. Pediatric dentists often have additional education and experience in treating common childhood dental problems, including cavities, childhood periodontal disease, and tongue tie.

Finding the Right Children’s Dentistry Practice in Raleigh

Pediatric dentists often complete two to three years of additional training in addition to the education and training they received at their dental school. This is so that they thoroughly understand common and not so common childhood dental problems and childhood development and psychology. They are also trained in providing dentistry to special needs children.

Ask for Recommendations

To start the process of finding the right pediatric dentist in Raleigh, you may want to ask other mothers or friends about the dentists they use. You can also ask your pediatrician and/or family doctor for recommendations.

American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry

Once you have your recommendations, you can use the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry’s advanced search feature to find more information on the pediatric dentists you are considering. The information provided includes the dentist’s address and website.

Review Pediatric Dentist Websites

Review each dentist’s website to make sure they provide the services you expect from a children’s dentist. In general, they should be knowledgeable in common childhood dental problems, proper jaw and tooth development and habits that can lead to dental problems, like thumb sucking and proper pacifier use, in addition to diagnosing bite problems and repairing cavities, chipped teeth and broken teeth.

Call and Ask Questions

Prepare a few questions and call the pediatric dentists you are considering. A quick phone interview can help you determine which dentist would be best for your child. Common questions to ask include how long they’ve been in business, their pediatric specialties, how long it takes to schedule an appointment and what types of insurance they accept. If you have a special needs child or a child with learning disabilities, you may want to ask the dentist if they accept children with special needs and what steps they take to ensure the child is comfortable and relaxed.

Schedule a Time to Meet

Once you’ve narrowed your list to two or three dentists schedule a time to go into the office and meet the dentist with your child. The waiting room should appear clean and neat, and there should be toys and entertainment available to your child while he or she waits. The receptionist should be friendly and helpful. When you talk to the dentist, make sure to ask lots of questions and allow your child to interact with the dentist. You will want a dentist that is knowledgeable and makes your child feel comfortable.

Preparing for Your First Children’s Dentistry Appointment in Raleigh

Before your child’s first dental appointment, you will want to take steps to help your child feel comfortable and relaxed. When talking about your child’s upcoming dental visit, always remain positive and upbeat, and do not accidentally say anything that could be construed as negative or painful, and try not to share your own dental stories, especially if they contain “scary” treatments, like drilling, pulling teeth and root canals. Accidentally, imparting this knowledge to your child could make them feel anxious or afraid.

You may also want to get some age-appropriate picture books from your local library or bookstore that discuss going to the dentist. This will allow you and your child to comfortably talk about visiting the dentist in relation to the information provided in the book. You can also play dentist with your child by letting your child be the dentist and performing fun checkups on their stuffed toys. Taking these steps to prepare your child for the dentist will help him or her feel comfortable when the day of the children’s dentistry appointment arrives.

Triangle Dentistry located in Raleigh, NC provides a state-of-the-art facility that offers exceptional general dental and specialty services guided by empathy of patient’s needs and desires. Services range from dental crowns and implants to veneers and whitening procedures. For further information, questions or to schedule an appointment, contact the office at (919) 747-3592.