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Going to the dentist doesn’t have to be hard for you or your kids. It’s just important to pick the right dentist who will meet your child’s needs. Once you find them, visits to the dentist office can be as great as visits from the tooth fairy!
Assess the Environment
Environment matters when it’s time to choose a dentist for your child. You want a place that makes them feel comfortable instead of an environment that feels cold. Ambience is key, and you can find offices that excel at creating this. The waiting room should be inviting so your child doesn’t feel stressed the minute she walks through the door. It should feel more like a cozy nook than a stoic office. Plants, magazines, and lighting are just a few ways staff can make the first place your child sees comfortable and calm. Exam rooms are the next place your child will be, so it’s important for the dentist you choose to give this area special attention. Some dentists offer noise-cancelling headphones for kids who worry about the sound of dental work. Many have televisions or other distractions so kids can focus on something besides what is going on with their teeth. Special massage chairs are even used in offices. Pay attention to the feeling the office invokes in you and your child before choosing a dentist.
Understand Their Approach
Not all approaches to dental treatment are the same, and you want to find a dentist that lines up with your values and views on care. A conservative approach, especially when it comes to kids, is often the way parents choose to go. This approach ensures that no unnecessary procedures are recommended or performed. If you have a dentist who likes to treat every possible thing instead of taking a more laid-back approach, you will likely be at odds with him most of the time. This can make dental appointments stressful, and it can leave you confused about what treatments your child should have and which ones to refuse. Most dentists state their approach on their websites or during their consultations. If you are looking for dentists in Westerville Ohio, it’s simple to access this information. Make it clear that you want your child to only have necessary procedures performed so they won’t develop a phobia of the dentist.
Consider Their Specialty
You don’t have to choose a pediatric dentist for your child to have a good dental experience. However, you do want to make sure the dentist you choose is experienced when it comes to working with children. Both pediatric and family dentists are good options because they are used to kids and know how to help calm them. Though many dentists will work with kids and adults, it’s important to know how comfortable they are with children. A dentist whose expectations aren’t age appropriate for the child he is treating may not have the skills to help if the child struggles. It’s okay to ask if the office is set up for kids and if the dentist is comfortable working with them. You can also usually get a feel for a dentist who is good with kids during a consultation.
Look for Recommendations
If you have a friend who loves their dentist, ask if she sees kids. A word-of-mouth recommendation from someone you know can be extremely reassuring when you are trying to find a new healthcare practitioner. You can also ask a friend questions about their dentist before you invest time in a consultation. Online reviews can also offer insight when it’s time to choose a dentist. Know that reviews from someone you don’t know can’t be trusted as much as reviews from someone you do. However, you can get an idea of what impression a dentist makes on patients if she is widely reviewed over a period of time. Referrals are also an option. Your child’s pediatrician may be able to refer you to a dentist who can meet your child’s needs. Your pediatrician already knows your child, and this can help ensure a good fit since she can take your child’s needs into consideration.
Finding a dentist for your child takes a bit of work, but it’s worth it. If your child has a good experience with their dentist, they will likely have an easier time committing to dental care in the future.