Finding The Right Dentist
Finding the right dentist requires some diligent research on your part. It is very important that you do this research because you are putting your personal health in someone else’s hands so you need to be 100% sure that this dentist would be the right fit for you and your family. Don’t rush into finding a dentist or like most people do just book the appointment with the dentist closest to your home. These kinds of approaches for your dentist search can prove to be disastrous in the long run.
Most people don’t spend too much time or energy into selecting a dentist. The general view is that since all dentist have the same educational qualification of having done a four year degree in dentistry, they are all the same. Nothing can be further from the truth, you need to find a dentist that will be right for you based on your situation, personality and nature. Statistics say that around 60% of the people have changed their dentist in the last one year, so this means that most people are not happy with their dentist. Changing any healthcare professional is not easy since your current healthcare provider knows you and your conditions but still lot of people are doing this. What does this tell you? That all dentists are not the same. It is best that you try to find the right dentist for you the first time around itself. I have written this article so that you can achieve this.
The first thing that will limit your choices for the dentist that you want to see is whether you have dental insurance or not. If you don’t have dental insurance then most likely cost will be a huge factor for you. Make a list of dentists in your area by searching on the internet or the phone book. If you do have dental insurance then you might want to find a in-network dentist as this will be the least expensive option. To find the in-network dentist you need to go to the website of your dental insurance provider and download the list of dentists in your area. If you are not comfortable using the computer, you can even call your provider and ask them to provide you the list of dentists in your area either on the phone or by mail. After you have the list you know that these dentists accept your insurance plan. Even though you have gotten this list from your insurance provider’s website, it is still a good idea that when you call the dental office to book an appointment you confirm that the dentist still accepts your insurance plan, the reason for this is that the insurance website might not be up-to-date, some dentists might have stopped accepting your insurance plan since the website was last updated, you don’t want any surprises when you go visiting the dentist or even worse after you have received the dental care and are slammed with a huge dentist's fee in spite of having dental insurance.
After you have a list of dentists in your area you should always ask your family members, neighbors, friends or coworkers if they have any recommendations for the local dentists. Some might even tell you about their bad experiences with some of the dentists and you can quickly start narrowing down your list further. If you are not comfortable finding reviews from your friends or acquaintances, the internet is a great place to find reviews. Just type in the name of the dentist on Google search and if the dentist is popular you are sure to find some reviews for him / her. Some of the popular websites to find dentist reviews are Google maps and Ratemds.com. Google maps aggregates the reviews from various websites so you can almost always find some reviews for the dentist you are searching on.
But a word of advice with the reviews, even the best dentist may have some minor negative reviews, so read the reviews with a grain of salt. If you only go by the reviews and strike out anyone who has ever received any negative remark, you may not be left with any dentist to see! So don’t worry about the negative remarks which don’t matter in your case for example if a dentist has received a negative remark that his office staff is rude then it may not matter much if the dentist is great, but if you really care that the office staff should be courteous and prompt then maybe you can strike this dentist off your list. So what matters to you depends a lot on the dentist you finally select. Also remember to not just zero in on one dentist but rather have the final list with at least 3-4 dentists because not every dentist would be accepting new patients. After you have the final list you need to call each dentist office and first ask them if they are accepting new patients. Some of the really good dentists might be too busy and may not be accepting new patients at that time. But don’t lose heart, there are still plenty of great dentists who are accepting new patients in almost every area, but still if you don’t find anyone you can increase your search area, i.e. maybe look few miles away from your home. Finding a good dentist is important even if you have to drive a few miles to get to their office.
You can also ask the dentist’s office, how long has the dentist been practicing in that area. The longer the dentist has been around, the better it is and the more reviews you can find. Finally it is essential that you find a great dentist which is right for you, if after your first meeting with the dentist you feel that this is not the right provider for your oral care, you should immediately switch to someone else, the longer you wait the harder it is to switch. Hope we can be of help to you in finding the right dentist in your area. If you have any questions or need further information about any dentist, please feel free to reach out to us.