Finding a great dentist isn’t easy. Whether you live in Hawaii or Fort Myers, FL, this can be a daunting task, especially if you haven’t been to a dentist for a while. Here are some simple tips to help make this task easier:
Ask People You Know
A great way to find a dentist is to ask other people that you know and trust. Word of mouth advertising, especially amongst your family, colleagues or friends is so critical. Often they will have good recommendations. In addition to asking what dentist they recommend, ask about other qualitative factors. Find out if the dentist is friendly, has a nice waiting room and has a great staff.
What if you are new to an area?
If you are new to an area, you may not know anyone who can recommend a great dentist. So what do you do in this scenario? Ask credible people who are in a position to know who the best dentists are. Often hospitals and other health facilities employ the services of a number of dentists. So they are in a great position to know who the best dentists are. All you need to do is call them up and ask for a recommendation.
You can also ask a local dental school. Dental schools are in a great position to know who the best dentists are in the area. In addition, dental schools may even offer lower rates than a regular dentist for dental care. Sure, you will have students performing your dental care, but they will be well supervised by extremely experience dentists who know what they are doing.
Use the Internet
Today, everything is on the web. Search for a website that lists dentists in your area along with patient reviews. A great resource like Yelp.com is great for something like this. Look for a dentist that is convenient for you and also look at their reviews. Make sure that their patients have a lot of good things to say about them. And if a dentist has a lot of negative reviews, look elsewhere.
Also visit the dentist’s website. You can learn a lot by checking out their website. Does the dentist offer all of the dental services required to meet their needs? You can also get a feel for the dentist’s personality by the way they have designed their site and what they talk about on their website. And if the dentist has posted a video, then you are really in luck. You can get a good sense of their personality too.
Special Dental Needs
When choosing a dentist, you should also consider your special dental needs. If you have healthy teeth, choosing a dentist is easier because all dentists are able to do the basics like cleanings and taking x-rays. But if you have crooked teeth you may want a dentist that specializes in orthodontics. Or if you want your teeth to look better you may want a dentist that specializes in cosmetic dentistry and so on.
Check Your Dental Plan
Another great way to choose a dentist is to look at the dentists that are pre-approved by your dental plan. In this case, you will already know that they will accept your dental insurance. But you should be sure to ask a lot of questions to confirm that they are the right dentist for you.
Call the Dentist
Once you have narrowed down your list of potential dentists, call them. See how you are treated on the phone. Confirm that they take your insurance. Find out
- how to get to the office
- what their business hours are
- how they handle dental emergencies that are outside of their business hours.
Take a Test Drive
Some dentists will offer free consultations or even free cleanings to prospective patients. Take them up on their offer. You will get free service and also a chance to chat with them so that you can see if you get a long.
Don’t Get Taken for a Ride
Some unscrupulous dentists will try to sell you services or treatments that you do not need. In this situation, go with your gut instinct and get a second opinion from another dentist if you are unsure that any treatment is not right for you.
Also, some bad dentists will post fake reviews on review websites. So always take the reviews that you see on these sites with a grain of salt. Make sure that the reviews align with your experience with the dentist and look elsewhere if they do not.
Remember you don’t have to go with the first dentist that you find. If you are not happy with them in anyway, keep on looking. Eventually you will find the right dentist for you and your smile.