When children are referred for dental treatment, parents often wonder “who is the Best Pediatric Dentist Near Me?”. However, in some cases you may be able to find a Family Dentist with experience in, and enthusiasm for, treating kids. For basic restorative treatment like fillings, I find that having your child see a familiar face for treatment to be the best option. For more complex cases like orthodontics, growth modification and space maintenance, a Pediatric Dentist may be the right choice.
Statistics show that most parents start their search on Google by inputting “Pediatric Dentist Near Me”. Below are some tips for finding a Pediatric Specialist with whom you and your child can be comfortable.
Finding Your Best “Pediatric Dentist Near Me”
Some areas, even large cities, have a very limited supply of Pediatric Dentists. The absolute key to the whole process is finding a Practitioner who is willing to listen to you. It also helps when their philosophy about intervention is similar to yours. If you can find someone that is willing to work with you to meet your goals, you have found a true gem!
The specialist will typically see your child for a consult appointment before undertaking any treatment. At this appointment, I would recommend inquiring about the treatment process. You are very likely to encounter a recommendation for sedation at the consult appointment. Be aware that there are varying degrees of sedation. The stronger forms of sedation typically carry with them a higher degree of risk. For instance, “laughing gas” (or Nitrous Oxide) is relatively low-risk compared to General Anesthesia, under which your child is unconscious.
Many Pediatric Dentists now favour heavier forms of sedation. However, some still entertain attempting treatment with laughing gas or, in some cases, no sedation at all. Sometimes it is worth looking at Pediatric Specialists in nearby cities to expand your search pool a bit.
Advantages to Treatment With a Pediatric Dentist
Pediatric Dentists undergo additional years of training after Dental School to specialize in treatment of children. They are experts in child skeletal growth, dental arch development & tooth spacing and alignment. They are also experts when it comes to providing complex treatment like baby tooth root canals (pulpotomies) and tooth reinforcement with stainless steel crowns. Pediatric Specialists also provide basic treatment like fillings. Often times, you can find a Family Dentist in your city who will provide dental treatment for children.
Are there advantages to treatment with a Family Dentist?
Family Dentists are referring kids for treatment more and more. However, there are still some that enjoy the unique reward that comes with being able to keep a little one comfortable during treatment. Kids do better overall when a familiar face is working with them. They are less likely to resist treatment and less likely to require sedation. At our office, for instance, we often keep children upright during treatment so they can enjoy a distraction as we work. In some cases this distraction enables us to treat them without even using dental freezing! Another big advantage to having a Family Dentist who treats children is the reduced fees. Specialist fees are higher compared to those of a General Dentist. The use of sedation increases fees even further.
Pediatric Specialists are fantastic at what they do. If you have made contact with a Pediatric Dentist that you and your child both like, stick with them! You won’t regret it. But always ask your Family Dentist if they are willing to try simple procedures like fillings with your child.
Thank you for reading!
By Dr. Kyle Hornby, Kitchener Dentist
This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a dental condition or treatment.