Kid's Dentist

carla35April 21, 2009

I found this odd.. I have a new Dentist for my kids (a pediatric one) and when I went to schedule a cleaning appointment they don't want to take my kids together (or one after each other). They want the 5 year old to come in the am and the 9 yr old to come in the afternoon. I'm like, what? It's not a waiting list issue. They can fit in 2 kids, they just don't take both ages at once. Now my 6 year old is a very good patient -- if you know what I mean... doesn't cry with shots, etc. and he has been to the dentist numerous times with no problem. I don't work, but if I did, I would really resent having to take off two different times to take my kids for their cleanings separately. Our old dentist's first concern was getting them in together.

Do your kids dentists do this or can you bring the kids in for cleaning all at once? I'm kind of put off by this and am thinking of trying someone else. What do you think? Am I missing something?

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That sounds annoying. I have 4 kids, and I've had docs/dentists not take more than 2 appointment on the same day from the same family, so I've had to do 2 and 2 later. But that was a scheduling thing, not an age thing. So, no, I haven't heard that one. And I would like more of an explanation if my docs' office had that policy. Surely that annoys other patients, it must affect many.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2009 at 8:20PM
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Sounds very inconvenient! I don't think I would go there!

    Bookmark   April 21, 2009 at 11:42PM
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Sounds odd to me. We do "back to back" or together appts. The whole family. It's a priority for me, and for our dentist. I see no reason why it would be better to have a family come in twice. If you're not attached to this dentist, let him/her know what's going on, and switch if they're not willing to accommodate.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 12:13AM
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That's ridiculous! Did you ask them why they want to do it that way? I never took my kids to a pediatric dentist, just a regular one, and we've been going to the same dentist for years, since my kids were little. They always let us schedule back to back appointments, including both kids and me so that all three of us went together and got it all done one after the other.

Personally, I'd find a different dentist.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 10:09AM
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My time was too valuable - I ALWAYS did my kids back to back.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 1:15PM
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My kids go at the same time or back to back.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 5:14PM
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The dentist seems like he has a good understanding of child behavior and school schedules. This dentist sounds very wise.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2009 at 10:32AM
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momj47, I would guess you're being sarcastic since most preschools and Kindergartens have their academic programs in the morning hours. Now that I think of it, our school's written policy is not to schedule routine Dr. visits during school hours, so I would have to schedule my 5 (soon to be 6 yr old) in the afternoon anyway. Guess we'll have to find another dentist for that reason on top of for my own convinence. Maybe I could have the school call him and explain ;-) A dentist's office who is going to make a mother come in and for all he knows take off work twice, is probably not the kind of office that I'd want to deal with.

Thanks for your thoughts and comments.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2009 at 4:26PM
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No, I'm not being sarcastic. Why would you think that?

Younger children are less tired and therefore, more likely to stand the "stress" of a dentist appointment in the morning, and some still take afternoon naps, so it would make sense to bring the younger ones in to the office in the morning. It's easier on the child, and easier on the dentist. The older kids would be scheduled in the afternoon so they don't miss school.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2009 at 5:07PM
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I think what 'makes sense' is individual for each family at different times in kids' developement (for a short time when my kid was a preschooler he would take 2:00 - 3:00 PM naps, ready and refreshed right after - perfect for an afternoon appt.). If a young child consistently showed that he/she could not handle an afternoon appointment, that would be grounds for discussion. I wouldn't want my providers to make general, unilateral decisions that may not meet my profile.

My pediatric dentist does try to steer younger children to the AM to leave slots in the afternoon for the school age kids. Now that mine are older I appreciate that policy, but I would walk if that were a rule instead of a guideline.

Dentist sounds controlling or doesn't want you. Go find another one.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2009 at 7:30PM
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momj47, I thought you were being sarcastic for the very reasons I mentioned... because 5 and 6 years old are in school in the am -- so you think it's good to have to pull a kid out of school for a routine dental cleaning? Or what exactly did your school schedule comment mean? And most 5 and 6 years olds I know don't still nap. He's not 2 or 3 -- but even if he were younger, I would think the mom would know the best time to make an appointment based on her own child's nap/sleep schedule, not the dentist. One of my friends kids doesn't even wake up until 10:30am --he would be a terror in the am. Not all kids are morning people.

Sorry, but he doesn't sound wise to me, just sort of controlling and kind of ignorant because he just lost two patients.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2009 at 5:48PM
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Dentists give appointments to the patients according to their routine schedule.I agree with your comment but dentists have their own policy to take care of the patient.Taking two kids having tooth problem to the dentist at same time, the kid gets scared when the other one suffers from pain and, even doctor looses his attention, so its easier for child, and easier for dentist to consult the i advice to take kids one after another for cleaning.

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    Bookmark   April 27, 2009 at 2:08AM
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This is for a routine cleaning appointment, not for tooth problems that are going to cause suffering from pain. In addition, what difference does it make if the sibling is suffering from pain or some other kid? The whole thing doesn't make any sense to me.

As jessyf and others pointed out, every kid and every family is different. Making a strict policy of seeing certain ages at certain times is not only self defeating, but it creates an inconvenience for the parent, whether s/he works outside the home or not, and whether the kids are in school or not.

When my son had braces, his orthodontist scheduled certain kinds of appointments for certain days/times. New patients' first appt had a certain time slot for example. That made sense, because it helped him run his office efficiently. But separating appointment times by age is arbitrary. What's the cutoff point... 5? 6? and how is that decided?

I think carla is right to just find another dentist, one who maybe values his patients' time and judgement in making appointments. As you pointed out, if they're that adamant about this issue, who knows what other kinds of problems/issues will crop up in the future.

Aren't the days when we were supposed to blindly trust our physicians without having any input or questions just because they supposedly knew better than us, over? We're not just patients, we're customers too.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2009 at 4:21PM
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exactly lowspark. I take my dd age 7 to the dentist with me... we have appts at the same time with different hygienists. They try to work with my schedule. If they took adults at 5pm and kids in the mornings I would find a new dentist. My time is valuable too.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2009 at 2:06PM
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    Bookmark   February 21, 2011 at 10:19PM
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