Choosing a family dentist or a pediatric dentist is something you want to give a thought especially if you’re seeking to establish a long lasting relationship with them.
While there are a good number of reputable dentists out there, some are out to rip you off—a practice that usually goes undetected by most patients.
It’s common to ask for referrals from friends and relatives or even cross over to the internet for the online reviews; but how do you establish if a dentist is good or bad; experienced or inexperienced?
Below are the 5 warning signs that your family dentist or the pediatric dentist you’ve chosen for your kid(s) isn’t a good fit.
Why You Need a Pediatric Dentist
Though some people may prefer having a general family dentist taking care of the entire family, others still prefer specialists to attend to their young ones. And of course, this comes with several benefits including:
- Specialized care. A pediatric dentist is trained specifically to handle children, thus able to manage or treat any special dental care need presented to them.
- Children-friendly dental offices. It’s normal to feel anxious especially when your next dental visit draws near; however, this isn’t usually the case with kids who attend pediatric dental clinics since the environment offers them the comfort and peace of mind; which makes them long for the next visit.
- Proper dental hygiene. Pediatric dentists have vast experience with regard to all the stages of teeth development, and therefore, able to take care of your child’s teeth right from their tender age into adulthood. They also teach children how to maintain good oral hygiene—which is crucial for their general well-being.
But how do you ascertain that your preferred pediatric dentist isn’t good? Below are some of the indicators:
Signs that A Pediatric Dentist Isn’t Very Good
1. Urgency without a valid reason
If you walk your kid(s) to the dental clinic for the first time and you’re told the child needs to undergo an urgent procedure; inquire the reason why.
Never give in easily to such recommendations since most dentists use this as a cover up for their lack of experience. They want to appear to be experts when they really aren’t.
If possible, seek for a second opinion elsewhere.
2. Too good to-be-true deals
Beware of dentists who claim to offer services, such as free cleaning or teeth whitening services. Though it’s a good way of giving back to the society, most dentists take advantage of such freebies to lure you into their offices.
And once you’re in, they’re likely to persuade you to take up their expensive treatment options.
3. Opting for diagnosis not covered by your insurance policy
Before going or taking your kid(s) for a dental check-up, ensure you first confirm with your insurance company if the policy covers your treatment need. This is to avoid being dragged into procedures and treatment options that will force you to pay out of your pocket.
Also, note there have been cases in which unscrupulous dentists committed insurance fraud by changing the diagnosis.
4. Unnecessary fillings
It’s indeed true that tooth extraction is usually limited to a given age for children; however, this doesn’t mean that your pediatric dentist should just recommend fillings even when it isn’t necessary.
If your kid has never complained of a toothache or never shown signs of cavities, then that should be reason enough to turn down the dentist’s recommendation, and if possible consider seeking dental services elsewhere.
You can even opt to let your family dentist take care of kids’ oral health as well, considering that some have the expertise.
5. Extensive teeth cleaning
Why should you or your child be subjected to extensive teeth cleaning procedures when you don’t suffer frequent gum infections?
Furthermore, such procedures are in most cases not allowed for in most insurance policies. So, if your dentist recommends that, you definitely know it’s a red flag.
Of course, quality dental care is all you need to keep yourself and your family safe from the illnesses always associated with poor oral hygiene. However, you should always be extra cautious when engaging a dentist to become your trusted family dentist or pediatric dentist.
Observing the above-mentioned factors will help, but, the first rule is to avoid such awkward situations.
Consider these healthy practices:
- Avoid solely choosing a dentist recommended by your insurance provider, and if possible, base your selection criteria on referrals.
- Avoid dental freebies.
- Do your research and compare prices before deciding on a family dentist or pediatric dentist.
- Always ask for a second opinion when in doubt.
Author Bio: Dr. Holly Gregory is a family dentist in Humble, Texas. Dr. Gregory loves helping her patients of all ages from 1 to 100. When she’s not practicing dentistry, she loves to relax at home with her family.