3 Pediatric Dentist Red Flags And What To Look For Instead

What to look for in a pediatric dentist

How To Find The Best Pediatric Dentist for Your Child

Parents are faced with so many decisions, especially for their young children. Finding the right pediatric dentist for your child can feel overwhelming. Finding the right dentist can be much more challenging if your child has dental anxiety, a disability, or special needs, or specific healthcare needs. 

But we’re here to tell you it doesn’t have to be a painful process. By looking out for these red flags and paying attention to what to look for, you’ll be on the right path to finding not only an accessible dentist but the right pediatric dentist.

Avoid these red flags when seeking a pediatric dentist for your child. 

Don’t worry – we’ll tell you what to look for in a pediatric dentist, but before we do so, we want to make sure you know what to avoid as well. After all, knowledge is power. And sometimes, parents don’t recognize a red flag until it is brought to their attention after the fact. Thus, knowing it ahead of time will help you sound those inner alarm bells and send you on your way to finding a better fit for you and your child.

Red flag # 1: The dentist isn’t sufficiently accommodating your child’s needs.

All children have a right to good dental care. Ensure that the dentist has a reasonable approach to assisting children that may suffer from dental anxiety, such as by offering sedation dentistry. If your child requires a wheelchair, ensure that the dentist’s office is ADA-accessible. If your child is deaf, check to see if they have trained interpreters, including ASL interpreters. Remember that this is required by law and is not optional. Finally, ensure the dentist has a non-discrimination notice, and don’t be afraid to ask to see it.

Red flag # 2: The dentist is making decisions for you and your child that you don’t agree with.

Parents often tell us that their previous child’s dentist made decisions for their child without considering their parents’ wishes. Then, the parents told us they went along with it because they assumed the dentist knew best. But we disagree. Dental decisions should be made as a partnership between the parent, dentist, and child when it makes sense. Seek a dentist that will work with you as a team and take the time to explain their findings and recommendations to you. You should never feel like you can’t ask a question, and you should never hesitate to keep asking until you receive an answer that you understand. Don’t settle for a dentist that makes you feel like you aren’t heard.

Red flag #3: You and your child feel uneasy at the dentist’s office.

We believe that you should never push intuition to the wayside. If something is making you uncomfortable, don’t ignore it. Look for a qualified pediatric dentist you and your child can feel comfortable with. You wouldn’t choose a pediatrician that you weren’t satisfied with, so don’t settle for a dentist that you aren’t pleased with. Find one with an environment that is set up for kids with staff members who are welcoming and friendly. Remember, if something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.

What to Look for in a Pediatric Dentist 

Now that you know what red flags to steer clear of, let’s make sure you know what to look for too. Be sure to ask yourself about your own non-negotiables when seeking a pediatric dentist. Consider what you would like to see from your child’s dental team. 

Your child’s oral care is not a compromise. Remember that not all pediatric dentists’ offices are the same and not all might be the right fit for you. Just because one didn’t feel like the right fit, it doesn’t mean it is a bad practice – it just might not be the best fit for you and your child.

Be sure to look for the four following traits in a pediatric dentist for your child.

1. Location

Location can be everything, especially when you have many competing priorities. Pediatric Dental Specialists has four locations for your convenience: Omaha, Grand Island, Hastings, and North Platte.

2. Qualifications and Licenses

You want to know that your child’s dentist has the right training to tend to your child’s oral care. Don’t hesitate to ask about the qualifications and licenses held by your child’s pediatric dentist. Ask about memberships and associations too. If you are interested in learning more about the dentists at Omaha Pediatric Dental Specialists, check out Dr. Ben and Dr. Frannie’s profiles on our website. 

3. Services

When seeking a kids’ dentist, you should first and foremost ensure they offer the services that your child needs. This usually means dental cleanings and oral evaluations from infancy through adolescence. But you may also be interested in what is offered for baby wellness, children with special needs, additional preventive dentistry services to help prevent tooth decay, cosmetic dentistry, and orthodontics.

4. A Positive Environment

Going to the dentist should be a positive experience for you and your child. Dental offices for children should be upbeat and fun, and while they should be sterile and clean, they should feel less like a dental office and more like a comfortable, safe, and fun place to visit. At Omaha Pediatric Dental Specialists, we go above and beyond to partner with parents to create positive dental appointments. 

Living in Omaha? Give Pediatric Dental Specialists a Try!

The team at Omaha’s Pediatric Dental Specialists is experienced in providing dental care to children from infancy through adolescence and we would love to meet you and your child. We believe that everyone deserves access to healthcare and we have created an office environment designed to provide a safe, welcoming, and fun environment for all children. 

We appreciate parents who advocate for their children and we will encourage you to ask questions. So if your child is in need of a dental cleaning and oral evaluation, don’t hesitate to request an appointment today.