If you’re new in town, or just in the market for a new Knoxville children’s dentist, your head may be spinning! There are many great dentists in the area, and plenty that specialize in children and families. How do you know where to start? It’s important to remember that finding a good dentist is not always about the dentist’s qualifications as much as it’s about finding a good fit for your unique needs. Like many other personal and professional relationships, finding the right provider means finding someone you feel comfortable with.
Do My Kids Need a Pediatric Specialty Dentist?
Many parents wonder whether they should seek out a children’s specialty dentist or just find a family dentist. The truth is that all dentists are trained in caring for patients of every age, and a family dentist can provide excellent routine preventive and restorative care. Children’s specialty dentists will have more experience dealing with pediatric health concerns, however. If your child has a specific medical condition that affects his or her health, you may want to seek out a pediatric specialist. If your child has had a problem with dental anxiety in the past, you may want to look for a dentist who provides pediatric sedation. Otherwise, a family dentist can handle your child’s oral healthcare needs, from infancy to the teenage years.
What is Most Important for My Family?
Before you start a list of potential dentists, consider which factors are most important for your family.
- Convenient location
- Friendly staff and dentist
- Longer/shorter appointment times
- Flexible hours that fit your schedule
- Comfort-enhancing technology
- Child-friendly amenities
- Glowing testimonials from other parents/patients
- The ability to meet your child’s special needs
Pick the top two or three factors from this list and let them guide you when considering a short list of potential dentists. For example, if your family’s dental health needs have been pretty routine thus far, location may be the most important factor for you. However, if you have less-flexible work hours, you may need to focus on a list of dentists that offer evening or weekend hours. If you’ll be bringing two or three small children in at one time, child-friendly amenities are a must! Find a few dentists that meet your criteria and research them online.
Recommendations from Neighbors and Friends
Asking a fellow parent or neighbor for dentist recommendations can be a great place to start your search—but take them with a grain of salt. What one parent loves about her child’s dentist may be something another parent tries to avoid. Every relationship is different and every parent may have different expectations. Read through a dentist’s website to see what makes them unique. You can learn a lot about a dental provider by searching it online and reading 3rd party reviews from Google, HealthGrades, and Yelp!.
The Right Relationship is Everything
Routine dental visits are more than just a check for cavities. They are an opportunity to learn about your child’s present and future oral health, and a chance to ask questions and understand any possible concerns. If you don’t have a trusting relationship with your dentist and dental staff, you may not feel comfortable asking questions and getting clarification on oral health issues.
When you bring your child to the dentist, you want to know that both you and your child will feel respected and heard. A great Knoxville children’s dentist will foster an atmosphere of mutual respect and openness. If you aren’t getting that from your current dentist, visit Dr. Jack Haney and we’ll take the time to listen and get to know your family. Many oral health issues are not merely clinical, and a holistic approach can help you and your child get the full benefit of great dental care.
If you’re looking for a great dentist for your family, visit our office to meet our doctor and staff. Call 865-693-6886 to set up an appointment with Knoxville children’s dentist Dr. Jack Haney.