Many parents understand the benefits of taking their children to a pediatrician. But sometimes it’s not clear why taking their children to a pediatric dentist is just as necessary. Dr. Peter Markov, a pediatric dentist and owner of VK Pediatric Dentistry in Arlington, VA, is passionate about pediatric dentistry, oral health and overall wellbeing, and making sure children receive the highest standard of care possible. He weighs in on some of the most important things to look for when choosing a pediatric dentist.
Top 3 Qualities to Look For in a Pediatric Dentist:
Specialized training, and more importantly, from where?
Specialists in dentistry, whether they are a pediatric dentist, an orthodontist, or an oral surgeon, require extra education in a post-graduate residency. This training grants a practitioner extensive knowledge, experience, and understanding of their specialty. But just as important as their training is where they received this training. There’s no easy way to compare residencies as there are no official rankings. But you can ask your pediatric dentist where they received their training (at a hospital or university), who were their mentors, and do they stay active in continued education. Dr. Peter matched at his #1 choice for residency after graduating at the top of his class in dental school and completed his training at a top-10 US nationally ranked children’s hospital.
Team Approach and How You Feel:
A pediatric dentist needs to create a dental home for your child. They should be working with you as a team. An important role is to educate both parents and children so that they can practice good oral hygiene at home. Modern pediatric dentists have shifted to a preventative approach which results in more conservative treatment and trying to address issues before they occur. Parents should be confident in their ability to maintain their child’s oral health. They should also feel confident that the dentist answered their questions. At the end of the day, your comfort and your child’s comfort are particularly important. You should leave appointments knowing that your dentist has your child’s best interests at heart.
Latest Technology, Materials, and Techniques:
In the last few years, there have been many advances in dental technology, materials, and approaches. Make sure your pediatric dentist is up to date. Techniques and materials like SDF (silver diamine fluoride), ceramic crowns, BPA-free materials, low radiation digital x-rays, painless injection techniques, and age-appropriate learning are a good starting point. Having a variety of treatment options means your child will receive personalized care with the best conservative options available to ensure your visit is as positive an experience as possible.
About Dr. Peter:
Dr. Peter Markov is a pediatric dentist and owner of VK Pediatric Dentistry, located in Arlington, Virginia at 5001 Lee Hwy. He built his modern, kid-friendly practice to ensure the children of Northern Virginia and DC can grow up with healthy and happy smiles. He is actively involved in the local community. Learn more about him and his practice here.