Whether to Choose a Family Dentist or a Pediatric Practitioner for Your Kids

If you have young children, you might wonder if you should start bringing them to your family dentist or if you should find an office that caters to kids. There are some pros and cons about each option. You should learn the main reasons to do one or the other before you make a decision.

It may seem easy to just bring your children to your own practiceer. This requires less paperwork, since the office should already have your insurance and payment information on file. You will just have to fill out some new patient forms. In addition, you already know all the policies of the office, including the hours, cancellation fees, and the procedures that are offered. This can simplify life a little when you need dental work for your kids. In fact, if the office is large enough and has a few dentists, you may be able to bring each child in for an appointment at the same time you have one.

On the other hand, your kids may be bored with a dental office that does not specifically cater to young patients. The waiting room may only have magazines for adults, with no colorful murals on the walls like a pedestrian office might have. There may not be any toys in the waiting room, either, unless many patients are also younger. In addition, the staff members may not deal well with young patients if they are used to adults.

For these reasons, you may be considering a pediatric practitioner. The advantages are that the staff should be used to treating young kids who are afraid of getting dental work, or are having their first appointment. The waiting room and exam rooms should be colorful and have lots of toys and books, allowing young visitors to feel at-ease and entertained. Plus, the staff members should be well versed with dental issues that tend to affect kids, as well as treatments that most young people need for their teeth.

But the downside of choosing a pediatric dentist is that you need to learn all new policies and fill out lots of paperwork for each child. You may also have trouble when it comes to your insurance provider covering treatment given by a practitioner who only raises young people, since some insurance groups only contract with family dentists in some areas. Plus, your children will have to switch clinics when they are older, so this may not work well if you wanted them to have the same dentist most of their life.

The decision is up to you, though you can let your children weigh in if you want. Consider all these options before deciding. Then get your children prepared for their next dental appointment with their new practitioner.

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