The Top 5 Questions to Ask Your Child’s Dentist

Dental health is crucial for people of all ages, but it holds particular importance for children. The early years of a child’s life lay the foundation for good oral hygiene habits and overall dental health. Pediatric dentists play an essential role in shaping a child’s dental future by providing specialized care, monitoring their oral development, and guiding parents on proper oral care practices.

The role of a pediatric dentist, like those at Hines Little Smiles, goes beyond just treating dental issues in children. We have specialized training to understand the unique dental needs of children and adolescents. We help create a comfortable and welcoming environment that encourages children to develop a positive attitude towards dental visits. This not only helps to alleviate any fears or anxieties they may have but also makes it easier for them to maintain good oral health throughout their lives.

As a parent or caregiver, you should feel comfortable asking questions during your child’s dental visits. These questions not only help you better understand your child’s dental health but also show your commitment to being an active participant in their oral care journey. Our team is always happy to answer your questions and provide guidance on any concerns you may have.

What to Ask During the First Visit

The purpose of the first visit to a pediatric dentist is to establish a dental home for your child, where they can receive comprehensive care, support, and education. This visit is an opportunity for you and your child to get acquainted with our team and familiarize yourselves with the dental office. It also sets the stage for a positive and trusting relationship between your child, you, and our team.

During the first visit, there are several essential questions you should ask to better understand your child’s dental history and oral hygiene routine:

Dental History

  • Has my child had any dental issues or concerns in the past?
  • Are there any hereditary dental conditions in our family that we should be aware of?
  • At what age should my child have their first dental X-ray?

Oral Hygiene Routine

  • What is the best way to clean my child’s teeth at their current age?
  • How often should my child brush and floss their teeth?
  • What type of toothpaste and toothbrush should my child be using?
  • Are there any additional oral care products, like mouthwash or fluoride supplements, that my child should be using?


Asking these questions during your child’s first visit will help you gain valuable insight into their dental health, as well as learn about the proper oral hygiene routine they should be following.

Questions About Treatment Options

As your child grows, various dental treatments may become necessary to maintain their oral health. It’s essential to ask questions and understand the available options, so you can make informed decisions about your child’s care. Here are some questions you can ask about different treatment categories:

Preventive Treatments

Restorative Treatments

  • How do you determine if my child needs a filling or a dental crown?
  • What materials do you use for fillings and crowns, and are they safe for my child?
  • How do you handle tooth extractions, and when are they necessary?

Orthodontic Treatments

  • When should my child have an orthodontic evaluation?
  • What are the signs that my child may need braces or other orthodontic appliances?
  • How do you decide between traditional braces, clear aligners, or other orthodontic options?

Questions About Dental Emergencies

Dental emergencies can happen at any time, and it’s crucial to know what to do in such situations. By asking questions about dental emergencies, you can be better prepared to handle them and even prevent them from occurring:

What to do in case of a dental emergency

  • How can I reach the dental office after hours or on weekends if my child has an emergency?
  • What are the first steps I should take if my child experiences a dental emergency?

Common dental emergencies

  • What are the most common dental emergencies for children, and how can I recognize them?
  • How should I handle a knocked-out, chipped, or broken tooth?

Preventing dental emergencies

  • What safety measures can I take to minimize the risk of dental emergencies, such as using athletic mouthguards?
  • Are there any habits or activities that may increase the likelihood of a dental emergency?


Understanding the various treatment options and knowing how to handle dental emergencies will empower you as a parent and help ensure your child’s oral health is well taken care of.

Questions About Dental Anxiety

Dental anxiety is a common concern for many children, and addressing it is crucial for ensuring they have positive experiences at the dentist. Here are some questions to ask about helping your child overcome dental anxiety and the options available:

How to help a child overcome dental anxiety

  • What strategies do you recommend for helping my child feel more comfortable during dental visits?
  • How can I prepare my child for their appointment to minimize anxiety?

Sedation Options

  • What sedation options are available for my child if they are particularly anxious or require extensive dental work?
  • Are there any risks or side effects associated with sedation dentistry for children?

Dentist’s Experience with Anxious Patients

  • What is your experience in working with anxious children, and how do you ensure they feel comfortable and at ease during their visit?

The Top 5 Questions

Now you know that asking the right questions is an essential part of ensuring your child’s dental health and wellbeing. Out of all the questions above, here are the top 5 questions to ask your child’s dentist:

  1. What is the best way to clean my child’s teeth at their current age?
  2. What are the benefits of dental sealants and fluoride treatments for my child?
  3. When should my child have an orthodontic evaluation?
  4. How can I reach the dental office after hours or on weekends if my child has an emergency?
  5. What strategies do you recommend for helping my child feel more comfortable during dental visits?


By asking these questions, you can gain valuable insights into your child’s dental needs and learn how to support their oral health journey. Remember, our pediatric dentistry team is here to help, and we encourage open communication to ensure the best possible care for your child.

We invite you to schedule a dental visit for your child at Hines Little Smiles and start building a strong foundation for their oral health today. Together, we can create a positive and nurturing environment that will help your child develop lifelong healthy dental habits.

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A dentist demonstrates to a child patient a large dental model for educational purposes during a consultation.