Are you wondering “how do I find the best pediatric dentist near me?” Child tooth decay is on the rise, but many parents don’t take their children to the dentist often enough.
But this isn’t due to bad parenting. It’s often due to lack of education. Many parents don’t know when to start taking their children to see a dentist—or how to even find a pediatric dentist in the first place.
That’s why we’ve put together this guide to help you get started.
So let’s dive in!
Talk to Other Parents
One of the best ways to find pediatric dentists in your area is to talk to other parents. They should be able to recommend the dentist they take their own children too, and they can give you a “behind the scenes” review of that dentist.
Make sure you ask them a few questions after getting a name.
For example, ask them if the office is child-friendly and about the dentist’s behavior. You should also talk to other parents about what kind of procedures the dentist has performed on their children.
A parent who’s only taken their child in for an occasional cleaning might not be able to give you as accurate a representation of the dentist as the parent who took their child in to get several fillings.
Start by talking to your family and close friends. But if they don’t have any recommendations, you can ask acquaintances as well.
Get a Referral from Their Pediatrician
Another good way to find a quality pediatric dentist is to get a referral from your child’s pediatrician.
You should be able to trust any referral your pediatrician gives you. This is also a helpful starting point if you don’t know a lot of other parents.
If your pediatrician can’t give you a referral, you might be able to find a registry for local dentists in the area.
Read Online Reviews
Once you have a few potential pediatric dentists in mind, you should start doing your own research. Don’t take your friends’ words—or even your pediatrician’s word—for it. Spend some time online reading reviews.
Start by looking up the dentist on sites like Yelp or Google My Business.
This will allow you to see what past patients thought of this pediatric dentist. Most of the reviews should be positive. If the majority of reviews are negative, you’ll probably want to skip that dentist and take your business somewhere else.
But don’t be scared off by a single bad review. If most of the reviews are positive, that one negative experience probably isn’t the norm.
Don’t be afraid to check the reviews for email addresses or other contact information. If you have more questions about the dentist, get in touch with some of the people who left reviews. They’ll be able to explain their experience in greater detail and give you a better idea of how the dentist behaves and works.
Set up a Consultation
You should pick your two—or three—favorite pediatric dentist options after researching them online. Once you have your shortlist, schedule a consultation with each dentist.
This will give you a chance to meet the dentist, get to know them, and ask questions.
And don’t hold back on the question part. You’re entrusting the oral health of your child to this dentist, so they should happily answer any questions or concerns you might have.
Not sure what to ask?
Start with these questions first:
- Where did you get your education?
- How long have you been practicing?
- What type of services do you offer? (Not all pediatric dentists offer the same things)
- Can you work with anxious children?
- What techniques do you use to calm down anxious children?
- Can you treat special needs children?
- At what age do you start treating patients?
You can also ask the pediatric dentist what inspired them to work with children. Ask if they have any children of their own. This might seem like a random question, but pediatric dentists with children of their own might be able to understand and work with your child better than someone who doesn’t.
But this isn’t a hard and fast rule. Pediatric dentists without children can still be just as qualified. It’s just something to keep in mind.
Visit the Office
You might be able to look around the office during your consultation. However, if you had your consultation over the phone or didn’t get a chance to examine the office, make sure you plan a visit.
Waiting for your appointment can be a loud, stressful, and long experience if the office isn’t kid-friendly. Make sure they have toys, books, and other things for the children to entertain themselves while they wait.
Schedule a Check-Up Appointment
Before you make your final decision, you should schedule a simple check-up appointment with the pediatric dentist. A consultation and visit to the office can tell you a lot of things, but they can’t show you how the dentist works with children.
Pay attention during this appointment.
Watch how the dentist behaves with your child. Are they able to keep your child calm? Are they patient? Do they help your child feel comfortable?
If you don’t like what you see, you might want to take your child somewhere else.
Finding the Best Pediatric Dentist Near Me
So how do you find the “best pediatric dentist near me?”
It takes more work than a simple Google search. But if you’re willing to spend some time researching and visiting dental offices, you can find a pediatric dentist that provides quality care for your child.
Not sure where to start looking?
We can help! Make sure you click here to get in touch with us today!