Just like we have a family doctor who we primarily consult for general check-ups, it is advisable to choose a dentist who we visit regularly for routine dental check-ups. This way, your dentist is well aware your individual needs, right from your medical history, anxieties and allergies. Furthermore, developing a rapport with your dentist goes a long way in him/her taking responsibility in case any emergency arises in the future.
However, with numerous dentists (not to mention their different specializations) practicing all around, it can be quite challenging and confusing to find the right dentist who is suitable for you!
What factors should you take into account to choose your dentist?
- Referrals: There is hardly anything more secure and trustworthy than a ‘word-of-mouth’ recommendation.Consult your known circle (friends, family, colleagues, etc.) to shortlist a few recommended names from which you can choose your dentist.
- Logistics: It is advisable to choose a clinic that is located near you. Find out the working hours to evaluate whether that would be convenient for you. Also, enquire whether the clinic has provision for emergency procedures, late appointments (if you are working) or consultations during weekends.
- Training and experience: Inquire about the dentist’s experience in effective diagnosis as well as handling special dental procedures.
- Services: Clinics differ in the range of services that they offer. Check out whether these services match with your requirements. For example, if you are looking for cosmetic dental procedures, what options do they have? Do they meet your needs?
- Ambience: Pay a visit to the clinic and check out whether the waiting room is well-organized. Is the ambience amicable? Does the staff behave courteously?
- Patient-friendliness:It is extremely important that your dentist is approachable enough to address your queries patiently and also handle you anxieties. Talk directly to the dentist to find out his/her approach to treatment. Does he/she believe in preventive care?
- Fees and insurance: Though this should not be the only or ultimate factor to finalize your dentist, it is important to find out the approximate estimates for dental check-ups and few common procedures and review whether it is affordable for you. Also, find out if the clinic accepts payments through dental insurance. Do they have special payment plans for expensive procedures? Remember that certain dental procedures are not covered by insurance, and hence, you have to incur these costs yourself.