How old should your child be the first time you take them to see a dentist?
Experts recommend scheduling their first dental appointment by the time they’re one year old. Although they may not get their first x-rays or an orthodontic evaluation until after they start school, it’s never too soon to get them used to the dentist’s office.
After all, it’s those basics like brushing, flossing, and routine cleanings that will have the biggest impact on their oral health. The question now is: How can you find the best children’s dentist in your area?
Keep reading as we discuss seven tips to help you find the best pediatric dentist in Boise, ID.
1. Ask for Recommendations
Whether you’re a new parent or you’re new to the area (or both), the best place to start is by asking for recommendations.
Talk to your neighbors, your work colleagues, or other parents at your kids’ school. Which pediatric dentist do they take their children to? What do they like (or dislike) about the clinic and the services?
If possible, get a recommendation for a family dentist. That way, you and your children can get all the dental care you need under the same roof.
2. Read Online Reviews
Once you have a list of candidates, take your search online. You want to ensure that the recommendation you received matches what other patients have to say.
Read testimonials from current patients on the dentist’s website. You’ll also want to cross-check those reviews on third-party sites like Yelp and Google Business.
The feedback about the dentist, the staff, and the clinic should be overwhelmingly positive. Look for reviews that mention how comfortable the staff made their children feel. It’s also a good sign when patients mention a high quality of care along with patience, gentleness, and professionalism.
3. Consider Credentials & Community Involvement
Any dentist you consider needs to have all the proper training, licensing, and qualifications. At the very least, they should be a member of the American Dental Association (ADA) as well as the Idaho State Dental Association (ISDA).
Don’t stop your research there, though. The best pediatric dentists in Boise don’t just provide great services in their office — they also give back to the community.
For example, do they have a special initiative to help families in need? Do they regularly participate in programs like Give Kids a Smile or Toys for Tots?
4. Choose the Right Location
As a parent, your schedule is busy! The last thing you need is a long commute to the outskirts of town every time your child needs to visit the dentist.
Look for a pediatric dentist with a downtown office that’s convenient to your home, your workplace, and your child’s school. As an example, Boise Family Dental Care is located adjacent to the St. Alphonsus Hospital campus at the intersection of Liberty St. and Emerald St.
5. Ask Plenty of Questions
Don’t be shy when you call to schedule a consultation with a local children’s dentist. Prepare a list of questions ahead of time that’s relevant to your family and their dental needs.
This could include:
- Do you accept my dental insurance?
- If not, what payment plans and financing options do you offer?
- Do you accept patients of all ages?
- What do you do to make children feel comfortable and welcome?
- Do you offer orthodontic treatments as well as general dentistry?
- Do you handle dental emergencies?
Ideally, you can find the answers to many of these questions on the dentist’s website. Still, it’s a good idea to ask the staff additional questions to get a feel for their knowledge and communication style.
6. Visit the Office
Your next step is to schedule a consultation to meet the dentist. You could also stop by the office to meet the staff and check it out ahead of time.
What’s the atmosphere like when you first step into the waiting room? Is there furniture, toys, books, and games specifically for kids? Do you get a good vibe when you walk in, or does it feel more like a cold, sterile environment?
Next, consider the office staff. Does the reception team greet you and your child in a kind and friendly manner? How do they respond to other children who may be anxious, upset, or unwilling to sit down?
Finally, is the staff happy to answer your questions and make you feel welcome? Or does it seem like they’re giving you and your child the brushoff?
7. Assess the Dentist
If you’ve made it this far, the final step is to meet the dentist and get your child into their chair. This is where you’ll make your final decision about whether you’ve found the right “pediatric dentist near me.”
Is the dentist warm and pleasant, perhaps cracking a few jokes to make everyone feel more comfortable? Does the dentist (and his staff) treat your child with patience and respect? Do they take your time to ensure your little one doesn’t feel frightened or overwhelmed?
Ideally, the dentist will do more than just check your child’s teeth and perform a basic cleaning. They’ll also spend time teaching and reinforcing proper oral care habits. After all, dentists know better than anyone that when good habits are established early and positively reinforced, they’ll likely last for a lifetime!
Find the Best Pediatric Dentist in Boise, ID
If you want your child to receive the best care, you need the skills of a local children’s dentist. When you Google “pediatric dentist Boise,” one name stands out above the rest.
Dr. Crump and his friendly, knowledgeable team tick all the boxes. We’ve been taking care of patients (young and old) since 2008, and we would be happy to care for you and your children too.
Use our contact form or give our office a call at (208) 328-6022. During your consultation, you’ll see why so many families trust us to be their local pediatric dentist.