Guide To Choosing A Dentist: Things to Look for!

Guide To Choosing A Dentist

Some of us are so daunted, we simply avoid dentists altogether. This is not a smart strategy. 

You may not look forward to going to the dentist, but there are ways to ensure you are getting the most from this vital healthcare treatment.

Studies link poor oral health to chronic diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.

Regular visits to the dentist play a significant role in preventing these conditions. So how should you go about selecting a dentist? Look for these simple guide...

What To Look for in a Dentist


Take your time choosing a dentist; don't wait for an emergency! There are several things to consider when looking for a dentist.

Location and office hours

Choose a dentist close to home or work. This will make it easier to schedule visits and to arrive on time. Also, make sure that the dental office is open on the days and at the times when you are able to schedule an appointment.

Cost

Does the dentist accept your insurance? Does the dentist offer multiple payment options (credit cards, personal checks, payment plans)? If your insurance plan requires referrals to specialists, can this dentist provide them?

Also, be aware that costs vary by practice. If you can, get estimates of what your dentist might charge for common procedures such as fillings, crowns or root canal therapy. Even if you have dental insurance, you may be paying part of the costs yourself.

Personal comfort

One of the most important things to consider when you choose a dentist is whether you feel comfortable with that person. Are you able to explain symptoms and ask questions? Do you feel like the dentist hears and understands your concerns? Would you feel comfortable asking for pain medicine, expressing your fear or anxiety, or asking questions about a procedure?

Professional qualifications

The dentist's office should be able to tell you about the dentist's training. The office also should have policies on infection control. If the staff seems uncomfortable answering your questions, or you are uncomfortable with their answers, consider finding another dentist. You can also obtain information about a dentist's qualifications from the local dental society or your insurance carrier. Most organizations of specialty dentists also list their members and qualifications.

Emergency care

Find out what happens if you have an emergency, either during regular office hours or at night or on a weekend. A dentist should not refer you to a hospital emergency room. You should be able to contact your dentist (or a suitable substitute) at any time by calling an answering service, cell phone or pager.

Licensing boards

Most state dental boards have a website where you can verify if your dentist is licensed. The website also should tell you whether there have been any disciplinary actions taken against him or her.
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