Whether your kids have a gummy smile with a few small teeth poking through or have already graduated to a full rows of pearly whites, proper dental health is an extremely important of your child’s overall health, well being, and development. Without proper dental health, your child runs the risk of developing serious complications such as infections that can spread to the rest of the body, as well as pain. And while learning good dental habits begins in the home with parents teaching their children how to brush their teeth, it’s also equally if not more important for parents to find a pediatric dentist in order to help in maintaining their children’s smile and their oral health.
Pediatric dentists, otherwise known as dentist for kids, are dental professionals that have gone to complete two to three more years of specialized training beyond dental school. As such, dentists for kids have a deep understanding of child psychology, including development, growth, and common behaviors. A dentist for kids will go above and beyond to create an environment that reduces the anxiety, fear, and stress children often feel when visiting the dentist.
Both parents can children can expect a warm, welcoming dental office environment completely with kid friendly play equipment, toys, books, entertainment, and friendly staff. A dentist for kids may even provide their children patients with sunglasses to shield their eyes from the bright lights that are needed during the exam, and in many cases, a dentist for kids will have a child’s favorite show playing in order to make the whole experience less intimidating and stressful. This kind of fun and relaxing environment created by a family dentistry office is meant to help make the entire process a lot less scary, which in turn helps to encourage good dental hygiene habits in children.
It’s important for parents to find a dentist for kids that they are comfortable with and there are many ways to go about doing so. A great way to go about doing so is to first start by asking for personal recommendations from family, friends, and even your child’s pediatrician. Many parents feel more comfortable working with a pediatric dentist that has been referred to them by someone they trust, such as another parent or medical professional. In addition, parents are also encouraged to check the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry’s pediatric dentist search tool. This may help to narrow down a number of choices and make the decision easier.
And as with shopping for any product or service, it always pays to schedule an initial consultation in order to get a better feel for the place. A consultation allows both parents and children to get a better idea of how a pediatric dentist operates and helps a parent determine how comfortable their child will be there. A good pediatric dentist will have no problem taking the time to explain how their practice is run and will do everything in their power to make parents and kids feel comfortable.