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Do Pediatric Dentists Really Exist?
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CHMother




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 9:23 pm
My 3 year old just started going to a pediatric dentist, one who was actually recommended here by other local Mommies (I live in Lakewood). Before we went the first time, I did everything I could to prepare him beforehand (telling him about the cleaning, prizes, etc). I must say that I expected staff members who loved kids, who would do everything in their power to encourage my child and make it a positive experience for him.

Unfortunately, my expectations fell flat and within minutes of being brought back by the hygienist, my son was in tears and totally uninterested in cooperating. He didn't fight, he just didn't cooperate smoothly. No wonder - barely anyone said a word to him; I was the one directing kid-friendly questions at the staff to help my child feel safe and involved.

Next thing I know, I'm being told that he has two cavities and he will need to be "sedated" (not full anesthesia) because he's not a cooperative patient.

Fast forward two weeks, and my husband was given a paper to sign that they could use a straight-jacket (they had told me at the initial appt that they would wrap him in a blanket, but it wasn't a blanket at all) and that they could use a "change of tone" (among other things) to encourage the child's cooperation if necessary.

My son came home woozy, unsteady, and sobbing that after my husband left the room and he started crying for his Tatty, the dentist "screamed at him," telling him to stop crying.

Is this my best option for dental care??

Does anyone have experience with dentists who were able to deal with reluctant children without resorting to powerful drugs, straighjackets and yelling?
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amother




Purple


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 9:25 pm
My DC (age 4) goes to a pediatric dentist (not in Lakewood). Of course they exist! This office sounds horrible. I would change offices immediately.
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gamzehyaavor




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 9:27 pm
BP dentistry in BP! Awesome place & amazing docs!
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amother




Khaki


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 9:41 pm
Dr todress (who does children and adults) recommends someone that’s supposed to be really good with getting the children to cooperate- don’t know the name- mayb call their office and ask them
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CHMother




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 9:41 pm
amother [ Purple ] wrote:
My DC (age 4) goes to a pediatric dentist (not in Lakewood). Of course they exist! This office sounds horrible. I would change offices immediately.


The reason I came here to ask is because a coworker of mine told me the same thing, that I should switch immediately and they're incapable... and then her son went to her "much better" dentist and had an almost identical - in some ways worse - experience that my son had.

I'm starting to lose faith Sad

What does your dentist do to get your child to relax and cooperate?
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smss




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 9:49 pm
Omg that is insane. I have the best pediatric dentist ever, but not in Lakewood! Keep looking though there's got to be someone better!
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EsaEinai




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 9:52 pm
The most important thing is to make sure your child doesn’t have a traumatic experience. We started by a typical pediatric dentist and later discovered an extremely child friendly office. My kids beg to go to the dentist now! Op, listen to your gut. It sounds like from the get go you knew this wasn’t a good place for your child. hatzlacha finding a wonderful pediatric dentist where your child will enjoy going!

Last edited by EsaEinai on Tue, Sep 10 2019, 10:35 pm; edited 1 time in total
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rachel6543




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 9:56 pm
That sounds terrible. My son has been to a pediatric dentist in my area and NEVER experienced anything you described above. My child had a completely positive experience, including getting cavities and a mini root canal treated when he was young. Definitely look for another dentist ASAP.
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monkeys




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 10:00 pm
They definitely exist. I’m on the west coast so I don’t have a recommendation for you but my kids LOVE going to the dentist. The office is bright and inviting with huge screens. The dentist is soft spoken and calm. Everyone is super friendly. They get prizes and stickers etc.
I’m sure if you ask around you’ll be able to find a better practice.
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seeker




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 10:36 pm
OP that's horrible and hard to imagine. My kids' dentist is the sweetest most child-friendly experience. She explains everything before it happens in such easy upbeat language, she has stuffed animals including familiar characters so the kids can "choose a friend to hold" if they're feeling nervous, and she takes things slowly if a kid is too anxious - there's never any reason to use force or anything because she'll work with the kid until they're "ready." My kids have never needed anything more intrusive than deep cleaning done with her but I'm confident that she could handle something painful the same way. One DD needed an extraction at a previous dentist and I was satisfied with the dentist until then but the way they handled that was not good, they did not have enough patience to get through her very valid anxiety and pain. Glad we switched.
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riks




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 10:40 pm
Of course they do. That whole office sounds horrible - worse than even regular dentists - just mean. Why wasn't your husband allowed to stay with your son while they treated him? That's really not ok - parents are always allowed in the room - even when you switch you should insist on staying
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seeker




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 10:40 pm
The dentist I had as a kid is still practicing, too. I don't remember her being quite as fun as our current dentist but she was gentle, soothing, office full of toys and prizes and decor... I remember the waiting room being really fun. I was not an easy patient because I was on the nervous side, very sensitive to pain and noise and light and everything, and asked a lot of questions (personally I don't think there's anything wrong with questions and curiosity. But it can surely be hard to stay patient when you have a job to do and a kid is asking a LOT of questions: what is that for and what does this do and how does that work...)

Also, you said your husband left the room? Why? I am only ever asked to step out for 5 seconds when they do an x-ray. I would not leave my kid alone especially if they're nervous.
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myname1




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 11:24 pm
I agree, that office sounds beyond horrible! I haven't taken kids to the dentist yet, but I went as a kid and cannot imagine they would ever use a straight jacket! And I agree- why should he have to be alone in there? Stay with him!
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justmarried




 
 
 


Post  Tue, Sep 10 2019, 11:24 pm
One is my children is very sensory and lots of things at the dentist bother him. I use Ezra Medical Center in BP - it’s a group. We had an emergency appt and I took whichever dentist was available. My son screamed through the entire filming - even before she started.

For the next appointment I requested Dr Jackson. It was a totally different experience. He told my son that any time he picks up his hand he will immediately stop what he is doing. I didn’t think that would work. I thought he would constantly pick up his hand. But it did work.

First of all he gave him a mirror so he can see what’s going on. Before easing each tool he showed it to him and let him feel it (tapped it on his hand...). Then he told him he will start and count to 5. Then again to 5. He complimented him and asked if he can try to let him count to 10 this time. My son gave a tiny cry and he told him there’s no need to cry - just pick up your hand and I’ll stop. He only picked up his hand one other time. The dentist explained that most of the time if the child is made to feel like he’s in control it makes them feel more confident and less scared. It took a little longer this way - but the filling was done without constant crying/screaming (which is annoying for the dentist and traumatizing for the child)

I don’t know Lakewood dentists, but ask around and definitely try out other places. It sounds like there wasn’t anything positive in that office anyway, I wouldn’t give them another shot.
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amother




Pewter


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 12:49 am
I had the same experience as you. We felt it was insane to put children to sleep for fillings. I had this at 2 different “pediatric” dentists- one in Lakewood and one a 20 minute drive out of Lakewood.

BH we just found a new pediatric dentist who recently opened an office here in Lakewood. He also has a practice in Brooklyn. He is appalled that in NJ kids are getting put to sleep to do dental work. His staff is nice and he is kind and gets the work done using laughing gas- kids awake and alert the whole time .
When we first came to him we had been told by the other dentist that my child had 3 cavities. Well, he rechecked and said that there is only ONE cavity!!!
So we’ve had a positive experience with him; finding him to be honest and kind.
His name is Dr. Figdor.
I think you will be happy there.
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Raisin




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 12:59 am
I think a pediatric dentist offers different services like sedation options not normally offered to adults. I don't know if they have extra training. Also, they should have fun offices with toys and stickers. And obviously be nice and caring and good with kids.

We had to try a couple of different dentists till we found one that worked for my son. Also, we just had a wait a few months until he was bit older and better able to handle it. (luckily it was something that could wait) The last office we used used laughing gas also. The first one we went to offered sedation (I think general anasthetic) but the sedation was so expensive and not covered by insurance we couldn't do it.
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simcha2




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 2:48 am
If your willing to travel 40 minutes I have an amazing pediatric dentist practice. Warm, loving, patient. Pm me if interested
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amother




Smokey


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 3:29 am
It's kind if like pediatricians. Many are more kid-friendly than an average internist.
My old one was irritable and impatient. We had to switch because of insurance . Once we switched my only regret was that we had stayed so long with the first one.
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OutATowner




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 3:34 am
simcha2 wrote:
If your willing to travel 40 minutes I have an amazing pediatric dentist practice. Warm, loving, patient. Pm me if interested

I was going to say something similar. Love my ped dentist. But I dont know how it would work with insurance. So sorry, OP!
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simcha2




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 3:39 am
OutATowner wrote:
I was going to say something similar. Love my ped dentist. But I dont know how it would work with insurance. So sorry, OP!


Mine is still in nj, so hopefully could work if op is interested.
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