What should I look for in a dental practice?

Whether your trusted family dentist is retiring or you’re moving to a new community and need to seek out a new dental practice, finding the right provider can be a daunting undertaking. After all, you only get one permanent set of teeth in your lifetime, so it’s extremely important to have an oral healthcare partner you can trust. The following tips will help you choose a new provider with confidence.

Word of mouth

No pun intended, but your friends, family and co-workers know you best and their recommendations can save you a lot of time vetting dental practices that may not be the right match. If you’re looking for a dentist in your current location, your family doctor may be able to make suggestions. If you’re relocating, ask your dentist to make a recommendation.

Getting to the root of your needs

The American Dental Association recommends that you visit more than one dentist before making a decision. Making a list of questions in advance will help you quickly extract the information you need to make your choice.

Consider what is most important to you. For example, if you’re a busy working parent on the go, flexible, convenient office hours and close proximity to home may be a priority.  Be sure to ask about the dentist’s policy on late cancellations or missed appointments.

A dental practice with an updated website that contains helpful patient information and a user-friendly portal can be a real time-saver as well. Find out if you can ask questions, schedule appointments and pay bills online.

If you have anxiety about dental treatments, then you may want to inquire about anesthesia and sedation. Or, if cost is a factor in your decision, then you’ll want to be sure that you only visit dental practices that are in your insurance network and are transparent about fees and payment plans.

Give your next dentist a thorough exam

You’ll also want to be certain that your next dentist is properly credentialed and is someone who will make you feel comfortable in the dentist’s chair. Most dental practices have an “About Us” page on their website where you can read more about the dentists’ educational background, interests and hobbies.  You also can call the front desk and inquire about services and appointments. If the person answering the phone is helpful and courteous, that’s a good indication that the practice’s environment is friendly and welcoming.

 

Now that you know what to look for, visit our “Find a Dentist” page and let us help you find your next perfect dentist!