3 May 2021

Recommendations of a Dentist and Psychologist for kids in Canberra?

| gourmetmumma
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Hi all… I am in search of a good family/kids dentist and a good child psychologist.

We moved here not long ago and we are living Northside, but I’m willing to travel if needed. I have called Smile Lounge and also the ACT health dental clinic and there seem to be minimum 2 month wait for both.

I’d love a local dentist around Belconnen or Gungahlin areas, but I’m willing to travel further for a kids psychologist that specializes in issues of anxiety, negativity, and building confidence and resilience in kids.

Any suggestions much appreciated. Thanks.

If you’re also searching for a dentist, check out our recently updated articles on the best dentists and the best cosmetic dentists in Canberra. Or, if you’re looking for a child psychologist, check out our recently updated article on the best child psychologists in Canberra.

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Once a child turns two years, it is wise to take them to an oral health therapist or a dentist so that they can do a complete oral health assessment. Of course, the dentist understands that they could be fearful and nervous, so will strive to make this experience comfortable for them.
We have highly experienced kids dentists at our Woden Dental Centre, Phillip Canberra.

Look no further for Kids Dentist, Childrens Dentist, Pediatric Dentist who can alleviate the fears your kids would be having about visiting a Dentist….

We have been to our local Gungahlin Dentist Dr. Shilpa Kalburgi thrice now and on all these dental visits had such wonderful experience. Dr Kalburgi and her staff have all been very friendly, knowledgable, extremely understanding and guided us correctly by discussing the right orthodontic option called Myobrace which no other Dentists in Canberra had provided before to fix my daughter’s crooked teeth. We are very happy with our choice and will highly recommend Dr Shilpa Kalburgi as the best Canberra Dentist for the entire family.

Northside Family Dental have an easy to remember phone number 6242 7777 and have the convenience of making dental appointment online on their website http://www.northsidefamilydental.com.au

Hi gourmet mumma, just out of interest, do you need a referral to get in to see a child psych? And do you know if they see very young children (ie under 5)?

gourmetmumma5:11 pm 14 Jan 11

BCBM thanks for the info – what a great idea. This is the type of thing there should be more of. Sometimes you don’t need a psychologist, just tips and ideas and someone to chat with to make sure all is on track. The workshops sound great and I’ll be sure to keep an eye on your website for future ones that I feel will be appropriate.

Again thanks everyone for your input – I have managed to get in to see Kingsley Tonkin for the time being as he is just around the corner from me and seems to have the attributes I am looking for. I have also booked into Andrew Gordon at Gininderra Dental from many recommendations so fingers crossed.

Thanks for the feedback I really appreciate you all taking the time to post 🙂

Hi there
If you are looking for child psycholigist, Joanne Richardson at OConnor Clinical Psychology is great! I support others ideas that Kingsley Tonkin is also good. It depends what you need??? For skill development you could look at http://www.bcbm.com.au. We are not psycholoists but counsellors who focus on skill development and internal self management and supporting parents to externally manage anxiety and distress on a child’s behalf until children develope the skills. In the meantime looking at mindfulness skills for kids on the net via your normal search engine will provide you with skills you can do with your child to develope anxiety tolerance and management skills.
Please feel free to give me a buzz andsay you are from RIOT ACT and I’m happy to support you to find the right person for your family.
Take care
Bobbi Cook
Senior Therapist
BCBM 62533116

vg said :

“You don’t know me”

I know enough if you need a psychologist to help build ‘resilience’ in your kids. Apparently being a good parent is being ‘narrow minded’ according to some of the fluff above.

I won’t lie awake in bed anxious, as you all seem to do, about what your defintion of narrow minded is. Get off your date and spend some time with your kids. Its your job to instill them with a sense of the world and themselves. Don’t farm off your responsibilities

Ah yes, the old judgement call without any knowledge of the situation what so ever. Of course, we all know that parents are just as qualified as psychologists/psychiatrists to deal with complex psychological issues. How dare they seek help and spend hard earned money in trying to find professional support for their child’s needs! They’ve should’ve just taken the “Parenting 101” class like everyone else, and have all the answers to everything.

Gmumma, Dr Jo Newton don’t do littlies any more (maybe mine scared her), Dr Wong is loved by my youngest 8 and my oldest 20. I like both dentists and me scaredy cat. The other dunno, but you are do’ en well.

gourmetmumma10:26 pm 08 Jan 11

Vg there are so many things I would like to say but my energy and time is too valuable to waste on those who get a kick out of trying to make others feel worthless and inferior.

To everyone else who actually had some great constructive things to answer my post I have followed some of them up and have some appointments organized. Thanks again guys 🙂

I would try the Psychology clinic at ANU which runs programs for anxious kids. I have had their grads on placements and they are very well supervised.

I would highly recommend the dental surgery at Hawker (02) 6254-9600. They were fantastic with my daughter, 11, who recently had to have six teeth pulled out.

“You don’t know me”

I know enough if you need a psychologist to help build ‘resilience’ in your kids. Apparently being a good parent is being ‘narrow minded’ according to some of the fluff above.

I won’t lie awake in bed anxious, as you all seem to do, about what your defintion of narrow minded is. Get off your date and spend some time with your kids. Its your job to instill them with a sense of the world and themselves. Don’t farm off your responsibilities

Oh, and we are also looking for a dentist in Gungahlin…one that is comfortable with kids as well as adults.

I did post an item about this yesterday (i.e. looking for a dentist in Gungahlin) but for some reason it has not been added to the site.

A new psychologist – who has a lot of expertise with children – has set up in Anthony Rolfe Avenue in Gungahlin. His name is Dr Kingsley Tonkin, and he used to be director of the psychology clinic at UC.

We have taken our son to see him for a cognitive assessment.

Web site is: http://www.kingsleytonkin.com.au/

Dentist: I have been happy with Dr Alex Parragi in Kingston 6295 6190 ?
Psychologist: Stefa Wirga is BRILLIANT – http://www.betterpsychology.com.au/


I understand what you are going through with a child with high anxitey, that is part of their makeup, there are things you can do to help, you seem to be on the right path, my daughter has been that way since she was little.

I used to call her Henny Penny, who thought the sky was falling, seriously though it’s not a joke, she is recieving help.

JustThinking7:29 pm 07 Jan 11

I too have an anxious/nervous worried child. (although he is almost 18yo now nothing much has changed)
I cannot recommmend anything,,,just wanted to say my 4 other kids have never had any real issues but this one son seems to worry and panic about everything.
Like Padoofs daughter,,my son also takes the worries of the world on his shoulders. He worries about 3rd World Children he sees on TV, worries about those less fortunate, we are always donating to this or that.
Since day ‘dot’ he was worried. I do my best to stop it getting ‘out of hand’ but I have no idea when it will stop.
He even worries about germs and being late and times and dates. He just worries all the time.

Gourmetmumma..I agree about changing the stigma of mental health issues. I for one have been fighting this issue for years. It is a shame that noone else understands or cares,,,until it happens to them, or someone close to them.

My kids have been to Dr Peter Wong for years, and it is great! The staff are friendly, the clinic is very kid-friendly too, and Peter is so professional. I actually just remembered that there is a female dentist who works there who is great as well, though her name slips my mind at the moment. Fiona, perhaps? Anyway, they are located in Deakin at the Lidia Perin centre. Hope this helps!

Dr Peter Wong and Dr Fiona Bell at Deakin are fabulous Paediatric dentists. They specialise in kids that have anxiety issues, and if the child needs sedation/general anaesthetic for any treatments they use fantastic Anaesthetists. I can’t recommend them highly enough.

gourmetmumma5:19 pm 07 Jan 11

Wow thanks guys the response is fabulous! I’m looking into all contacts now to see how I go.

Padoof – your kids sound like mine…almost 8 year old son who since the day he was born was a highly strung anxious kid. Looks at the world through the eyes and mind of an adult and takes everything on his shoulders. On the other hand 6yo daughter is the most carefree, easygoing kid you could ever meet. Funny how people like to judge needing a ‘child psychologist’ like you have no idea how to parent. I am a woman raised my a mother who suffered terrible anxiety and other mental illness eventually committing suicide when I was 19, I myself suffer anxiety but thanks to these ‘charlatans’ have the skills to manage it on my own, and would like my son to get these skills for himself to get through his life happy, healthy and well balanced. My next step was to speak with the school counselor. We are working well as a family and husband and I have done so much reading and research to help him out – it’s just good sometimes to have a ‘third party’ like a good psychologist/counselor to touch base with once in a while and keep us all on track, and give my son another person he can trust to open up to if he needs to.

Benita_449 – before we moved here he did a great program in Brisbane called Confident Kids which helps build resilience and give him the skills to manage worrying and negative thoughts, similar to the Cool Kids program so thanks for the details.

On another note while I’m on my high horse (I am very passionate about trying to change the stigma and negativity attached to mental health issues) 😉 if my son had a heart condition I’d take him to a cardiologist, if he had a broken arm we’d put a cast on it, so if he has anxiety we see someone who can help and support him with it. Not just tell him to ‘get over it’. Perhaps if he does break his leg I’ll just tell him to hop for a while.

Thanks again everyone…

Dr Hassan at Deakin is great – I’ve recommended him to a few people with dentist anxiety and they all rave about him. Another plus is that the receptionists are also really friendly and incredibly helpful.

Hi gourmetmumma: Dr Clark http://www.canberrachildpsych.com.au/page1.php comes with a big recommendation.
Also, UC offers a program called ‘Cool Kids’ that you might like to read about – could come in handy: http://www.canberra.edu.au/faculties/health/psychology/clinic

If fear of dentists is a/the issue, Ray Swanston at McKay Gdns in Turner is very good with dental scardy-cats. He’s in to pain-free dentistry, and is very switched on to the issues of nervous people. Nice quiet little surgery, too.

hey gourmetmumma – spot the non-parent? you sound like a great mum xo

As the parent of an 11yo child who suffers from anxiety issues, you have my empathy. My child is a high academic achiever who takes the weight of the world on her shoulders – this child cried herself to sleep after finding out about global warming and gets worry pains in the stomach to the point of vomiting.

Her sister, on the other hand, is also lovely, well balanced, high academic achieving 14yo with a job. Can’t go blaming the parenting here! vg, what a narrowminded attitude to think that there’s no need for an expert for such an issue and that the parent is to blame. How boring the world would be if we were all the same.

My child is being treated by the school counsellor at the moment, your child’s school counsellor may be able to recommend someone? Some names suggested to me were Bruce Stevens and Deborah Inge.

Dentist – Worboys in Belconnen 6251 2530. My partner used to see them, he’s a chicken so they must be good.

Good luck to you.

I second Britta Hannaford in civic.
She’s very friendly, incredibly professional, appears to be very knowledgable, and errs on the side of conservative approaches (i.e. not ripping out wisdom teeth just for the hell of it as recommended by another dentist.)
She’s also a mum so should relate to kids better than some.

LadyoftheLake1:36 pm 07 Jan 11

For a Dentist (in Belconnen) who is great with kids and their parents I totally recommend Dr Andrew Gordon in that big medical centre you can see from Coulter Drive. He has been my dentist since I was a teen and has also taken fabulous care of my son for the past 12 years.

Cnr Nettlefold St & Coulter Drive
Belconnen, ACT 2616
Ginninderra Medical and Dental Centre
Tel: 02 6112 7111

gourmetmumma said: Gospeedygo…are you thinking I’ll need the child psychologist to deal with the after effects of the dentist??

I for one certainly have never been back a second time!

Oh and I have never worked or am working for any of these practices in case you think I may be drumming up business… I’m actually studying to be a ‘charlatan'(psychologist) lol

Being myself involved in the dental industry for 12 years I can recommend a few places. Although they are not necessarily Northside;
Evatt dental care, Janine Mylonas and Heather Apthorpe
Nick Jowitt in the city
Jo Newton in the city
Helen Cullinan in Curtin
Britta Hannaford in the city
I’m not sure how busy each practice is or how costly, but these practices generally have a good reputation and friendly staff. Finding the right dentist is always a personal preference so what might be great for one person may not necessarily be suitable for the next
Good luck 🙂

gourmetmumma12:34 pm 07 Jan 11

Gospeedygo…are you thinking I’ll need the child psychologist to deal with the after effects of the dentist?? 😉

gourmetmumma12:26 pm 07 Jan 11

Thanks for the great feedback everyone I’ll follow it up.

VG – I was prepared for at least one small minded comment about the child psychologist. You don’t know me or my family so if you have nothing constructive to say, then don’t say anything at all. Perhaps if I continue to do all I can, including spending money on ‘these charlatans’ my kids will grow up to be well adjusted, secure, confident adults, not like some people who like to post inconsiderate comments to other people on forums.

troll-sniffer12:20 pm 07 Jan 11

I forgot to mention that DR Loc Lam is my response to the dentistry question, not the charlatan part.

lilmisschatterbox11:24 am 07 Jan 11

We have taken the kids to a number of psychs for various issues and have not had much luck. Certainly no one I’d recommend. We might try Dr Lam if we are unlucky enough to have the need again.

Dentists – Dr Peter Wong at Deakin was great. Wasn’t the kids’ regular dentist but they made room for an appointment at short notice for an emergency and he handled it so well he now sees both the kids. Not exceptionally warm but nice enough to keep the kids relaxed and has a very kid friendly environment and staff. 6285 3166.

“but I’m willing to travel further for a kids psychologist that specializes in issues of anxiety, negativity, and building confidence and resilience in kids.”

Eff me! Isn’t that a parents’ job? Talk to your kids, spend some time with them and don’t waste money on these charlatans

Try the APA website for psychs http://www.psychology.org.au/

Marshal O’Brien is also a very good psychologist. Worth the trip to Deakin.

troll-sniffer10:20 am 07 Jan 11

Dr Loc Lam in Lonsdale Street is a world-renowned lookerer-afterer of kiddies anxieties, highly recommended by a raft of once-insecure kids across the nation’s capital.

I don’t know about a psychologist but if you’re on the Northside try Dr Chris Quoy at the Wakefield Gardens dental practice. The practice staff are so friendly you’ll probably fall out off your chair, and Chris is very thorough, engaging, eager to help and friendly.

I went there because another dental franchise (based in Civic) were total rubbish; the staff were rude and snarly and totally inconsiderate. I was having a wisdom removed once, but this didn’t stop the assistant staff (not connected with my procedure) from bursting in the door and quizzing the dentist about his digital camera. Then, when it was all over there was no consultation about my remaining wisdoms other than a request to make another appointment to come back and have the other removed the following week. No thank you!

So….not much faith in dentists eh?

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