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What are the primary differences between a pediatric dentist and a general dentist?

What is a general dentist?

Family dentists and general dentists deal with teeth. Both treat oral care, and improve oral health. Family dentists care for children of all ages. A family dentist is a great choice for your family if you have children of different ages. Both doctors deal with teeth, treat oral hygiene, and dental health. Family dentists and general dentists that see kids are both great options for families.

What is a pediatric dentist?

Pediatric dentists, or Family dentists, are general dentists that have two more years of training after dental school. They are trained on the special needs of children from a baby until they are a teen, and children with special needs. They can do everything that a general dentist can, and are a great option for kids. Family dentists can see adults too, but are trained to deal with the needs of children.

Why should my child see the dentist?

Every child should visit the dentist. Children have special needs that make their needs different from adults. Choosing the right dentist for your child is important. The right dentist will be patient and happy to work with your child! The right dentist will make oral care fun for your child, and help keep smiles healthy. Taking your child to a general dentist that sees kids or a pediatric dentist will make sure your child has a healthy smile. These dentists will give the best treatment. A Kool Smiles office may make it easier for your family to keep appointments.

How soon can my child see the dentist?

Kool Smiles General Dentists will see kids as soon as their first tooth arrives. They can provide oral health exams to check for any oral health issues in the mother or baby. A Kool Smiles office may make it easier for your family to keep appointments. We can schedule all appointments together and see kids and adults.

The Kool Smiles dental offices have fun activities for children, and use special tools to fit their little mouths. Kool Smiles are designed to treat kids of all ages, and is an excellent choice! We want to keep your child's mouth as healthy as possible so they will have happy smiles for life!

How do I teach my kids to brush their teeth?

How can I set a great example for my kids to help them brush their teeth?

Begin brushing your teeth in front of your children at an early age. Children will always look to mirror their parents. When brushing, try to exaggerate your facial expressions, so children can see how you’re brushing your teeth. Some parents play the sugar bug game, where you try brushing out the sugar bugs from the bottom, the top and front of your teeth. The goal is to have fun and try not to make it an exact science.

Is there a fun way to help my kid brush their teeth?

Yes! You can make tooth brushing time fun by playing games! We have several games that will get you started! A favorite is a counting game -count out loud for every tooth that is clean. “Tooth number one is all clean! Tooth number two is all clean! Here comes tooth number three!”  Your child will enjoy brushing and practicing counting. Learn about more tooth brushing games to play with your child here:

How can I take care of my child's teeth before they come in?

When your child is a baby, as early as 6 to 7 months old, before the first tooth appears, you can gently wipe the gums to keep them clean with a soft cloth, a soft baby toothbrush, or with gauze and water. Your baby may enjoy the gentle rub on the gums if she is in pain from teething.  Do not use toothpaste as your baby is not old enough to spit or rinse.  

When should I begin teaching my children how to brush their teeth?

As soon as the first tooth arrives, you can brush your child’s teeth. Check with your dentist, but usually around 2 years old you can begin using children’s toothpaste. Once your child’s baby teeth start to form, usually around age 2 or 3, it is safe to teach a brushing routine at home. Teach your child how to properly brush and floss their teeth. Brushing the teeth will remove sticky plaque, or food particles from inside your child’s mouth.

Brushing time can be a lot of fun for you and your child! Remember to be patient, and practice brushing after meals so that it becomes a habit. Give your child healthy snacks like raw vegetables and fruit to help clean your child’s teeth throughout the day. Your child is watching you so be sure to care for your smile! Have fun, and remember that an early start and great oral care will keep your child’s smile healthy and happy for a lifetime!

How is Kool Smiles different from other offices?

Kool Smiles offices are specially designed for kids and their parents. Our staff is trained to work with children as young as 1, and with people of all ages. Our offices are equipped with everything needed for children and parents alike, including cheerful decor, and most offices offer playgrounds and other fun activities to keep children entertained and parents relaxed. We want your child´s visit to our office to be as enjoyable as possible. For adults, you can expect a comfortable, clean environment and the great customer service you deserve.

Do you treat adults?

Most Kool Smiles offices do treat adults, with a full range of services that includes cleanings and exams, extractions, fillings, permanent crowns, root canals, and bridges or partial dentures—all in our friendly, caring environment. Please call your nearest Kool Smiles office to ask if they are scheduling adult appointments.

Do you do orthodontics?

Yes! Many of our offices offer orthodontic services. Visit your Kool Smiles location page or give us a call.

What dental care plans do you accept?

Kool Smiles accepts most major insurance plans, including Medicaid, State Children´s Health Insurance Programs (SCHIP), and United Concordia´s Tricare.

We accept several state-specific insurance providers, like Healthy Smiles, South Carolina Medicaid, Oklahoma Soonercare, Smiles For Children of Virginia, and MassHealth.

Do you have payment plans?

While most of our patients have insurance, we also accept patients with no insurance who pay with cash or credit cards. Unfortunately, for these patients we do not have a Kool Smiles payment plan; however, we accept CareCredit, and we can help you apply in our offices on the spot. We recommend that an initial evaluation be performed, including X-rays and a complete exam by the doctor. We will provide an estimate of all the dental work needed.

Are parents allowed in the back with their children?

Yes. At Kool Smiles, we welcome parents to accompany their children in the treatment area. For some patients, the presence of a parent or guardian helps the child build confidence. For other patients, having a parent or guardian in the room during treatment may cause the child to become inattentive to the clinical staff (much like a student can be distracted by having his or her parents in the classroom). The office manager, along with the doctor and the parents or guardians, work together to identify the best solution for each individual child, to make sure everyone is treated using the highest standards possible. After all, we believe every child deserves to have a positive dental experience, and working together with parents and guardians helps ensure that children recognize Kool Smiles as a caring, safe, and friendly place.

I would like to switch my Kool Smiles office because I have moved. What should I do?

Make an appointment at the new office and tell them you are a current Kool Smiles patient. Please make the appointment at least one week in advance to allow us time to transfer your records.

What should I bring if dental work was provided at another office that is not part of Kool Smiles?

  • A copy of all X-rays
  • An evaluation from the dentist who performed the dental service

My child saw another general dentist recently and I was not satisfied. Can he or she have another cleaning done by Kool Smiles now?

Most insurance plans have limitations on the services they will cover, and your child will not be covered for a cleaning until six months after the last one.

Do I need to bring recent X-rays from a previous general dentist, or will you take new ones?

Yes, bring any recent X-rays. We will take additional X-rays if needed, and let you know about any X-ray limitation in your insurance plan.

I was told by a previous doctor that my child needs to have a deep cleaning. Can he or she have a regular cleaning by Kool Smiles?

If the patient was diagnosed with any type of periodontal disease, he or she will require more than a regular cleaning. Our doctor will examine the patient to determine the best treatment. In most cases, our offices can provide the deep cleaning; if our office cannot, we will refer you to a local doctor who will.

Will my child have all of the work done on the first visit to Kool Smiles?

Many treatments are completed in one visit. If more extensive work is required, it will be completed over additional visits.

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Kool Smiles of [CITY NAME]

123 Main Street
Cityname, ST 44444
(444) 492-0001

Kool Smiles of [CITY NAME]

123 Main Street
Cityname, ST 44444
(444) 492-0001

Kool Smiles of [CITY NAME]

123 Main Street
Cityname, ST 44444
(444) 492-0001

  • Looking for a general dentist who will see your children?

    Try Kool Smiles!

    Kool Smiles was founded in 2002 and was built on the belief that every family has the right to quality dental care in a clean, safe and fun environment. Our first goal is to provide quality and compliant dental care to individuals in communities that typically get overlooked by general dentists. Our services are not just for kids, but since we know children are more likely to have great dental habits if mom and dad do too, we happily care for the entire family.

  • Does Kool Smiles have general dentists that accept Medicaid?

    Yes, all Kool Smiles general dentists accept Medicaid.

    While very few dentistry practices accept Medicaid as a payment option, Kool Smiles, in adherence with its mission to provide quality dental care to underserved children and their parents, proudly accepts Medicaid in every location. To find a participating Kool Smiles general dentist near you, please search for a dentist close to you, or call us today at 1-855-223-KOOL.

  • What is Medicaid and how can I find a general dentist who accepts Medicaid?

    Access to healthcare for millions of Americans

    Medicaid is a government program that provides access to healthcare for millions of Americans who would otherwise be uninsured. Medicaid also provides for dental coverage at varying levels for children and adults. Each state regulates its own Medicaid program in conjunction with the federal government. Unfortunately not many dentists take Medicaid as a payment option or restrict the number of patients they will see. This limits the choices an individual has to see an approved Medicaid dentist. Kool Smiles is unlike most dentists and welcomes all patients, including those with Medicaid coverage.

  • What makes Kool Smiles different from other general dentists who see kids?

    It is our mission to provide high quality dental care in a safe, fun and friendly environment.

    Our offices have been built with families in mind. Our offices feature spacious waiting rooms with a play area for children and most offices feature semi-private treatment areas for adults. We have a fun décor, staff who has been trained to help our young patients, and a desire to make sure all patients receive the dental care they deserve.

  • Does Medicaid cover my child's cost when I go to a participating general dentist?

    Typically Medicaid will cover any recipient under the age of 21.

    Details of what is covered for pediatric dental and adult oral health care varies from state to state. However, coverage typically includes dental pain relief, dental hygiene or teeth cleanings, addressing infections and tooth restorations. For a complete list of services covered in your state, just call us and we'll help you understand your Medicaid dental benefits.

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