Experts recommend visiting a dentist every six months to deep-clean our teeth and check-up on our oral health.
But not all dentists are made equal. Perhaps you had one who triggered your dental anxiety or you can’t find a reliable one near you.
If you’re on the hunt for a dentist near you, you’re in luck. Here’s how to find one.
Things to Consider
Before you Google “cheap dentists near me”, consider:
Your Dental Insurance
A great place to start is by contacting your healthcare provider to get a list of dentists in your area. You can do this by checking your health insurer’s website through Human Resources at your work.
The Type of Dental Work You Need
If it’s for regular checkups and cleanings then you have plenty of options. Find a dentist’s office where the staff is professional and friendly, so you’re completely relaxed.
Suffering from teeth grinding? Filter your search so you get a list of sleep dentistry organizations to find a dentist who can help you.
Looking for cosmetic work like veneers? Search for specialists in cosmetic dentistry who highlight before and after evidence of their work.
Or if you’re focusing on children’s dental care, search for a reliable pediatric dentist in the area. Many offices that focus on family dentistry could be a great fit too.
How to Find a Great Dentist
Dental pricing options are important, but as you hunt for a dentist you should:
Ask for Recommendations
Ask your friends, family, and co-workers for a trustworthy recommendation. If you’re stumped, find the friend who has had extensive work on their winning smile, and you’ll be on the right path.
Get a Referral
Your family physician or local pharmacist will recommend a great dentist. Both professions get feedback on local dentists so you’ll get an idea of which ones are best suited for your needs.
Search on Google
Either use a Dental Provider Review Site or Google local dental practices to see what patients are saying.
They’ll offer unbiased feedback and help you cross out some offices if they don’t provide the service you need. You can also search “dentist near me” and work your way down from the top-rated reviews.
Once you’ve narrowed it down, check out the dentist’s website. A good dental practice will have a well-designed one, with plenty of information about their specialties, the staff, and testimonials so you can see if they’re the perfect match.
Check Board Certification and State License
All dentists are certified and you can find which certifications your local dentist has by visiting the American Board of Dental Specialities. With this data, you can see whether they have a current state license.
If a dentist has failed to complete these steps or renewed their certifications, it’s best to look elsewhere.
Meet and Greet
Still not 100% sold on a dentist?
Don’t be shy about calling or visiting dentists before booking an appointment. Make a list of questions and bring along your dental records so they can see your dental history and pinpoint anything specific they need to work on.
It also gives you a chance to discuss any dental concerns or anxiety, so you can see whether the dentist understands your situation.
Questions to Ask Before Your First Appointment
To put you at ease, try asking:
What Will It Cost?
Dentists should provide a price list of all standard procedures such as x-rays and fillings. Or they may suggest a face-to-face conversation so you can go over an insurance plan or if there are different prices for cash-only patients.
Do You Participate in Continuing Education?
It may seem invasive, but confident dentists will have up-to-date knowledge and will happily give you an answer on any recent courses they’ve attended.
You could also ask:
- How will the dentist and office staff handle emergencies outside office hours?
- How long have you been in practice?
- Is the office staff familiar with your benefits plan?
- Does your dental practice offer financial options for treatment costs?
Look Out for These Red Flags
Before you book an appointment, consider their:
Once you enter the dentist’s office, look around. Surfaces must be clean and shiny as it shows they uphold high hygiene standards. Even if the office is old, the furniture and carpet should be tidy and there should be a comfortable atmosphere.
A good dentist will hire staff who reflect well on them. Look at how the staff is treating patients, as they should be friendly and set their patients at ease before they see the dentist.
Often, there are many treatment options you can choose from to correct any dental issues.
A bad dentist will say there’s only one way to approach treatment and would seem frustrated if you ask about any other possibilities. A good dentist will accept your questions so you can both agree on the best solution.
High-quality dentists never have a problem if you ask for copies of dental records for a second opinion. If the dentist responds negatively about another option, consider that a red flag.
That’s How You Find a Dentist Near You
It’s possible to find a dentist near you who will listen to your needs and offer their advice on any dental issues. Ask loved ones for recommendations, check out reviews from local dentists, or get a referral from a physician.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions about how they work and their certifications. A good dentist will want you to be comfortable from the get-go.
Are you looking for a new dentist? If so, we’d love to hear from you. Contact us here for more details.