Whether you’re moving to a new town, or simply looking for another provider, selecting a new dentist is an important decision. Your oral health is a key component of your overall well-being. Having someone with whom you feel comfortable, in addition to a staff who makes you feel equally at ease, is what keeps you coming back with little to no anxiety for your necessary biannual appointments.
So when looking for someone new, what do you look for in a different practice and a new provider? We have helpful tips to ensure you choose the right dentist for you and your family.
The American Dental Association (ADA) offers these suggestions:
- Ask family, friends, neighbors, or co-workers for their recommendations.
- If you’re moving, ask your current dentist to make a recommendation.
- Contact your local or state dental society. The ADA provides a list of local and state dental societies on its web site, www.ada.org. Your local and state dental societies also may be listed in the telephone directory under “dentists” or “associations.”
The ADA suggests calling or visiting more than one dentist before selecting the team you trust.
Analyze the Logistics
Be practical when choosing the best practice for your needs. Take into consideration:
- Is the office easy to get to from your home or job?
- Do they have convenient office hours?
- If you have dental benefits, is this dentist in your network?
- Doctor-patient communication is essential. Do you need translation or interpreter services?
- Is it wheelchair accessible?
- Does the office have experience working with patients who have special needs?
- If you have a unique health condition, will the dentist be prepared for you?
Reviews and reputation
Ask your general practitioner and your pharmacist for their professional recommendations before choosing a dentist. But also keep in mind that social media is a powerful way to get inside information from people who have been to the practice and met with the provider. Check out their online reviews on Google and Facebook. A dental practice’s website will also give you an insight into how they run their business.
- Is the site up-to-date and user-friendly?
- Does it convey a professional and appealing look?
- Is there helpful information about their services, hours, and staff?
- Can you book an appointment online?
Schedule a Meet and Greet
Don’t be afraid to “interview” the dental practice and the dentist before you commit to your first appointment. Call and schedule an initial consultation. Take with you a list of your questions and your dental records. This will give you a chance to learn whether the dentist will meet your needs, if the communication is clear, and if you like the staff. You can also observe if the office is welcoming, comfortable, and clean.
A few questions you might want to ask, include:
- Will the dentist explain ways to help you prevent dental health problems? Is dental health instruction provided?
- How does the dentist and office staff handle emergencies outside of office hours?
- Is the office staff familiar with your benefit plan, and do they offer financing options for treatment costs?
- Will your medical and dental history be recorded and placed in a permanent file?
Change is hard, no matter what it is. We understand and want to make it easy for you to choose a new dentist.
Asheville Dental is dedicated to providing a comfortable, compassionate, and professional approach in a team environment. Contact us for a consultation and see why we are the trusted dental practice for so many patients in western North Carolina.