Choosing a Nearby Dentist
Finding a Local dentist you love visiting, and who makes dental procedures pain free and a pleasant experience for you, that too in the vicinity of your residence, is a quite a challenging and time-consuming job. Having knowledge about various dental specialties and the allied dental professionals, such as the dental hygienists and the assistants, can help you a long way in finding a dentist who offers services which are suited to your dental care needs.
The Dentist and the Dental Specialties
A general dentist is the primary dental healthcare providers in your area and is involved in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of oral health problems in patients of all ages. Their expertise is not limited to a single specialty; rather they look after your overall dental health. However, in certain complex cases, general dentists can refer their patients to a specialist dentist, who specializes in diagnosis and treatment of dental problems related to a particular field of dentistry. For example, an orthodontist is involved in the straightening and alignment of your teeth, via a prosthodontist provides you with prosthetic dental appliances for your missing teeth. A dentist usually has a qualification of DDS (Doctor of Dental Surgery) or DMD (Doctor of Dental Medicine).
The Dental Hygienists
The dental hygienist is authorized to perform a few selected dental procedures, depending upon the laws of the state they are practicing in, such as professional tooth cleanings, providing general dental care, and examining your teeth for signs of cavities. They are usually designated as RDH (Registered Dental Hygienist) or RDHEF (Registered Dental Hygienist with Extended Functions)
The Dental Assistants
The dental assistants are responsible for providing assistance to the dentist while they perform various surgical procedures, such as setting up the equipment for anesthesia, developing radiographs, in addition to other routine tasks.
According to the laws of the United States, dental hygienists, and dental assistants can only work under the supervision of a qualified dentist.
Factors to Consider While Choosing a Dentist
Before you make your decision and entrust him or her with the responsibility of looking after your oral health, you must first consider the following points:
1) Ask How Long the Practice is in Service
This should be your first question. Dental surgeries that are operational for longer times are more likely to be renowned and fruitful in providing better oral healthcare than the newly established practices.
2) Ask About the Dentist’s Qualification and Clinical Experience
Asking about a dentist’s qualification and clinical expertise will help you assess whether he or she is sufficiently skilled and trained in providing the dental services that you require. Another point to consider is whether he or she is a general dental practitioner or a specialist. You should not hurry in choosing a Local dentist, rather take your time in making the decision.
3) Consider the Locality
Choosing a dentist far away from your residence will cost you a lot in terms of time and money. Hence, it is advisable to pick a dentist who is near to your home, and you don’t have to sacrifice a lot of your time and gas money to visit them.
4) The Local Dentist Affiliations
A Local dentist’s professional affiliations and memberships depict his or her standing within the dental community. Any dentist who is having a lot of affiliations with various dental societies is likely to be more connected and successful.
5) In Case You Need Cosmetic Dental Treatment
Cosmetic dentistry requires a steady hand as well as a keen attention to detail. In case you are considering of getting cosmetic dental treatment, ask your Local dentist for the “before and after” photos of his or her previous patients, so that you know about their cosmetic skills.
6) What about Referrals?
Sometimes, dentists specialize only in a single field of dentistry, and may have to refer them to another Dental Specialist
7) Ask About Patient Comforts
Provision of patient comforts, such as nitrous oxide inhalation, sedation and sources of entertainment, such as music and television is becoming popular among dentist. You should see that the dentist you are going to choose is in possession of these facilities, in addition to having a relaxing and spacious waiting room.
8) Ask About the Cost and Insurance
You should ask your dentist about the estimated total cost of treatment so that you can make up your mind while keeping in mind your current financial and budget conditions. Another thing to ask is whether the dentist accepts various insurance plans, and specifically if your insurance plan is acceptable at his or her office.
9) Ask About the Dental Team
Another paramount factor to consider is whether the dentist’s team is helpful and friendly to the patient because visiting a dentist becomes a very unpleasant experience if the staff is not cooperative or unfriendly.
10) Ask Around
You should ask around in your community about the Local dentist you are considering to choose because these are the people who have had a firsthand experience of the dentist’s treatment as well as the dental team’s hospitality. Now, the next time you need to choose a dentist around you, you should consider the points as mentioned earlier, and you will end up with a dentist whom you love to get your dental treatment from, and it becomes a pleasant experience for you, rather than a dreaded one.