How to Choose a Pediatric Dentist
Taking care of children’s teeth is perhaps one of the most important parts of their overall health. Preventing dental problems from starting at an early age will help to insure their dental health throughout the child’s life. Choosing a pediatric dentist who understands this is an important step for any parent or caretaker to take.
A good pediatric dentist will, of course, carry all of the necessary qualifications to practice. This will include the required academic training and the associated lab and intern work that is part of earning a medical degree in dentistry. Post- graduate work is also necessary in the specific field of children’s dentistry, as is accreditation by the American Dental Association. Further study in related fields that apply to the practice of a pediatric dentist, such as sedation dentistry and child behavior, will be the signs of a commitment to providing the best possible dental care for children.
This commitment will also be reflected in the continuing education that a good pediatric dentist pursues after graduation and accreditation. The practice of children’s dentistry is one of constant expansion as to the advancements in techniques and technologies that are introduced each year. A pediatric dentist who genuinely cares about the overall health of children will pursue continuing education courses and seminars that can help them improve their practice, and will have the certificates to prove it.
Additionally, a pediatric dentist who has proven their skill and commitment in pursuit of the best possible dental care for children will be recognized by their professional peers for their efforts. This recognition will often be found in the certificates of affiliation with the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the state society of pediatric dentists in which they practice their trade. This type of pediatric dentist will also have earned awards from professional organizations and philanthropic foundations that are committed to excellence in pediatric dentistry.
These are the qualifications that will be found in the profile of a good pediatric dentist. The actual practice of an exceptional pediatric dentist will be reflected in their genuine care for children’s dental health, their “chair side manner”, and the general environment of their dental office. The experience of going to the dentist can be an anxious one for many children, and a compassionate pediatric dentist will make sure that the staff and the office are “kid-friendly”, exhibited in a caring and welcome atmosphere that caters to a child’s need for a fun and relaxed experience at the dentist office.
The relationship between a pediatric dentist and their patients, and the parents or caretakers of their patients, is based on trust. The child must be able to trust the dentist in order to allow them to perform the necessary procedures that are part of regular dentistry, such as examination and treatment of the oral areas. This can be intimidating to a child, and a good pediatric dentist will have the skill and demeanor to gain the child’s trust. The parents or caretakers of the child must also trust that the dentist has a genuine desire to provide that child with the best possible dental care.