There are many qualified pediatric dentists in the Houston and Katy Texas areas, but are you sure that you are choosing one who is right for your child? Although any dentist would likely be able to care for your child’s teeth, pediatric dentists are specially trained in working with smaller mouths and more temperamental personalities from babyhood to adolescence. Your kids’ smiles stay with them for life, so ensuring their teeth are cared for and corrected well at an early age will set them up for better long-term oral health. Especially since childhood is such a formative time, it is important that you find a dentist who will encourage your kids to pursue a lifelong habit of caring for their teeth and regularly going to the dentist without fear. Here are some of the qualities that you should look for when choosing a pediatric dentist:
They have good reviews from other families
Before trying out the dentist, look for online reviews. You want to make sure that the reviews mention that they work well with both kids and their parents. It may also be beneficial to ask for suggestions from other parents who you trust. This is always a good first step to ensure that you will be putting your children into good hands.
They have a welcoming and kid-friendly office
First impressions, even just about an environment, can be everything to a nervous child. Although the office may serve both adults and kids, they should still have age appropriate activities to keep your child occupied and diminish their anxiety. Look out for kids’ magazines, books, and toys. Some offices may even have a kids’ corner with small chairs and a TV playing a kid-friendly show. You may also ask if you can bring a book back with your child while they are waiting in the chair. Any way to make your child feel more comfortable and calm is a plus.
They are good communicators with children
It is essential that your pediatric dentist communicates well with your child. The ultimate goal is for your child to have a good experience at the dentist so that they will have a positive connotation to carry with them into the future. The pediatric dentist should be friendly and patient with your child. It is often helpful for the dentist to explain what they are doing as they clean the child’s teeth. If your child starts to become nervous or scared by a certain step, the dentist should know to be patient with them and allow them to become more comfortable with the step. They should also motivate your child to take care of their teeth on their own, sometimes by allowing them to choose a colored toothbrush and a fun, flavored toothpaste.
They are good communicators with adults
On the other side, the dentist should also be able to communicate well with the parent. After all, if the parent seems uncomfortable with the dentist, the child will take note and be less trusting of the dentist as well. The dentist should include you in the conversations they are having with the child and be able to further explain the conversations to you. As a parent, you are responsible for granting permission to the dentist to perform other necessary procedures on the child such as filling cavities and suggesting orthodontic work. You also may be given some further tips on how your child can best clean their teeth. The doctor/s should be able to clearly explain all of this to you and easily answer any further questions you may have.