How to Choose a Dentist Who Can Be Your Partner for Dental Health

Most people dislike visiting the dentist and try to put off a visit until it is an emergency. However, you need to get over your anxiety and consider the dentist your partner for good dental health. Routine checkups and appropriate treatment can keep your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy and prevent all dental ailments. You must remember that poor dental health contributes to several other illnesses, including cardiovascular disease. The secret of good oral and dental health is finding an experienced, capable, and dependable dentist. Some handy tips:

Start the Search

Your top priority should be identifying a dentist you can depend on for skilled and cost-effective treatment. You can ask family, friends, colleagues, and other people you know socially for recommendations. You can also use ADA’s Find-A-Dentist tool that lets you refine results by location, specialty, and name. Alternatively, you can ask your local health department, dental society, or dental college for recommendations. You can look them up online to find their profile, credentials, facilities, and reputation. Shortlist a few dentists based on convenience of access and timings, credentials, reputation, whether the dentist is in your insurance network and a member of the ADA.

Meet and Interview the Dentists

Call each dentist on your shortlist and make an appointment to meet the dentist, and assure yourself that you will be in good hands. Find out if the meeting goes as per the schedule and if the front office staff makes you welcome and is competent and professional. Find out if the waiting area is comfortable because you will likely be spending some time there every visit. Bring your dental records for the dentist to peruse and advise you. See if the dentist has a professional attitude, listens to you carefully, and answers your questions candidly. Also, find out how the dentist handles emergencies outside of business hours. If you have any specific concerns, you should discuss them with the dentist and satisfy yourself with his response.

Insurance and Payments

You should find out if the dentist is in your insurance network and is familiar with your plan. Alternatively, you can ask your insurance company to give you a list of dentists in their network so you can visit the one in your area. You must keep in mind that dental care, especially procedures like fillings, extraction, dental implants, root canals, etc., can be expensive, and you could be in a problem unless the dentist accepts your insurance plan. You can also check with the insurance company regarding the deductibles and co-pays to make as per your insurance plan. According to Forbes, choosing an in-network dentist can help prevent unnecessary out-of-pocket costs. Also, find out if they offer any methods of making staggered payments or financial plans for expensive treatments, not covered by your insurance.

Check the Dentist’s Credentials and Experience 

Checking the board certification of an Oyster Bay dentist near me is among the most important things you need to do before finalizing a dentist. The certification is proof that the dentist has the necessary training and skills needed to provide good dental care to patients. You should also find out if the dentist has a clean record and not faced any disciplinary action or medical malpractice suits. You can access a variety of online resources to find the desired information.

If you are interviewing a dentist to get treated for a specific condition, you should ask the dentist how many procedures he has undertaken and his record of success. If the procedure is corrective or cosmetic dentistry, request him to show you before and after pictures so that you can gauge his competence. Do not forget to ask him about possible complications and what will be the line of treatment should you have any issues.

Consider the Dentist’s Gender

You will need to discuss personal information openly with your dentist and also spend a lot of time close to the dentist. If you are more comfortable dealing with a person of your own gender, you should look around for a suitable dentist. Since dental care for men and women differ, picking a dentist of the gender of your preference may be a critical consideration.

Access Patient Reviews

Even if the dentist is conveniently located, accepts your dental insurance plan, and has all the right credentials, you still need to check on his reputation and performance to be assured you are making the right choice. You should go online and find out what kind of reviews the patients have given to the dentist. You will also know about the experience of patients with scheduling appointments, the punctuality of the dentist, and the attitude of the front office staff, in addition to the outcome of the procedures. You will also learn the accuracy of medical records and billing, wait times, and the dentist’s attitude. Accessing the social media accounts of the dental practice will also give you a glimpse of how the clinic operates and how responsive the dentist is to patient queries and complaints.

Ask About Specialization

If you are looking to identify a dentist to address a specific dental condition, you will want a dentist specializing in that procedure. If you are looking for a dentist to take care of you and your family’s general dental health, including typical procedures like extraction, fillings, dental cleaning, teeth straightening, implants, etc., you will want a dentist competent in all the general procedures. It will help you avoid having to visit different dentists for every little issue. You will be better off with a dentist providing a wide-ranging variety of dental services. However, not all dentists attend to children and the elderly, so if you have such members in your family, you need to identify separate dentists for them.


Since you need to make your dentist your oral health partner, you will want to identify a dentist you can open up with and who will listen patiently to your problems and advise you on the optimum course of action. Your aim should be to find a dentist you can rely on to provide efficient and affordable dental care at every stage of your life.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *