I can strike fear into the hearts of many dentists with a single word: children

This month's issue of Dental Economics is all about pediatric dentistry. For those of you who don't regularly treat patients, you may be shaking in your boots at the mere mention of little patients. In his editor's note, Dr. Chris Salierno says, "But what if treating children were a pleasure? What if we could work efficiently and stress free on our tiniest patients? You may be surprised to learn that there have been significant advancements in pediatric dentistry over the last few years. . . . I can't think of anything more rewarding in dentistry than a tiny high five from a pediatric patient."

Chris Josh Img 6424

Popular opinions about treating kids are that it's too challenging, not profitable enough, and emotionally draining. Even if a dentist chooses to treat kids, he or she may just do it to win over the mother and father as potential patients.

But what if treating children were a pleasure? What if we could work efficiently and stress free on our tiniest patients? You may be surprised to learn that there have been significant advancements in pediatric dentistry over the last few years. Proper systems and elegant technology have largely eliminated the headaches that were commonly associated with caring for children.

MORE READING |Behavior management considerations in the pediatric dental patient

Invest time in learning these new skills and reap the rewards. Yes, treating children is a great way to recruit their parents into your practice if they aren't already. Yes, the work can absolutely be profitable and efficient. But you can also feel great about delivering much-needed care and education to your most impressionable patients. It's not uncommon for edentulous adult patients to have started out as anxious pediatric patients.

So, if you've reduced or eliminated pediatric dentistry from your practice, please consider making the effort to welcome these patients back. It will take some team training and investing in the latest materials. (Did you know there are cosmetic alternatives to stainless steel crowns?) Let's start the process with this issue. I can't think of anything more rewarding in dentistry than a tiny high five from a pediatric patient.

Chris Salierno, DDS

CSalierno@PennWell.com

MORE FROM DR. CHRIS SALIERNO |Accountants to the rescue!

More in Practice