The key to a healthy and attractive smile is regular visits to your local dentist. According to Memorial dentist, Dr. Girish Bharwani, DDS, “the foundation of dental health begins with brushing your teeth daily, and making sure to get a dental cleaning and six-month checkup with a dentist.” But finding the right dentist can sometimes be confusing. If you’re wondering how to find the “best dentist office near me,” you will need to gather some information to help guide your choice.
Since you will be visiting your dentist regularly for routine dental exams and checkups, you’ll want to find one who is located conveniently close to your home. Your prospective dental practice should have a website with its address listed. Check out your local dentist’s reviews through Google, Facebook, or even Healthgrades. These reviews of dental practices give you a feeling of how actual patients have been treated when receiving dental care. Look for a dentist who has a good number of positive reviews from their patients. These review sites have great information from people with first-hand experience of the dentist’s office and that can give you a sense of what to expect from each dentist your research.
Another factor to consider is access to insurance. If you have a dental plan, is your prospective dentist located within your network? A great way to find out is to explore their website. Often insurance information is found on the homepage or in the menu of the website under ‘patient information,’ ‘contact,’ or sometimes ‘insurance & pricing.’ Once you’ve found a dentist who has great reviews and carries the insurance you have (or accepts self-pay patients), you’re close to finding your dental home.
Word of Mouth
Another excellent way to find a good dentist is to rely upon the recommendations of family, friends, and colleagues. Ask them who their dentist is and why they (hopefully) like them. Some folks aren’t keen on going to the dentist, so it can be a challenge to get them to share their experience. You’ll want to help guide them to the answers you need by asking good questions. Questions like “Is the dentist gentle?” “Have you ever experienced pain during a visit and if so, how did the dentist help?,” or “What do you like most about the doctor you’re recommending?” Additionally, you’ll want to make sure the recommendations you’re receiving are for dentist offices that are in proximity to where you live or are willing to travel.
What services do you need?
Essential to your search for a great dentist is finding a doctor who is able to provide the services you need. Almost all dentists provide a basic set of services, like the following:
That said, there are always emergency situations that may require immediate attention, and not all dentists can see you on the same day. Additionally, there are services that may be recommended by the dentist you visit that they themselves do not do, like a root canal. Sometimes, it is easier to simply search online for a root canal specialist if you’re looking for a specific service and want to evaluate the dentist office you’re considering.
Dental Implants for Missing Teeth
In the case of replacing missing teeth, not every dentist offers dental implants, as specialized training is needed for their placement. A dental implant is an artificial tooth that is implanted directly into the jawbone for firm support. Unlike dentures, an implant will firmly remain in your mouth and cannot slip or fall out. Dental Implants are popular because they act just like a natural tooth and also last for many years.
That said, if you’re searching for a dentist that offers replacement teeth options, remember that you’ll be visiting your dentist more than once. Each dental implant is made up of three parts, and most often, each part of the new tooth has its own appointment. In the first appointment, you would have a metal post implanted. After your jawbone has organically grown and fused with this metal post, in a second appointment, an abutment will be placed on top of it. Finally, during your third appointment, the dentist you choose would place a dental crown on top of the abutment to provide your brand new tooth ready for chewing. Because of the multiple visits with your dental implant dentist, you may want to do a little extra research to ensure you feel comfortable with the dentist’s office.
Again, even though you may not currently see the need for replacing a missing tooth, you may eventually need this type of service from your dentist. Looking at the specific reviews for each service, as well as the overall reviews of their practice, should let you know what types of services and treatments that your prospective dentist provides and whether they are trustworthy.
Pediatric Dental Services
A note of importance. Although most dentists provide dental services for very young children, not all of them have specialized training in pediatric dental services. In short, not every dentist is a pediatric dentist. A pediatric dentist is trained to put kids at ease when they are in the strange environment of the dental office. That means when you’re looking for a children’s dentist you want to make sure they are credentialed as a pediatric specialists. This is usually straightforward to discover by looking at the homepage of their website. You’ll see words like “children’s dentist” or “pediatric dental care,” and then you can read the “About Us” or “Meet Our Team” section in the menu to discern the credentials of your doctor.
So visit your prospective dentist website to see what kind of pediatric dental services they offer. Then, take note of any specialized training in this area that they may have undergone. Finally, as always, read the reviews of other parents who can tell you their child’s experience with the dentist in question. If you find good credentials and reviews, you’re likely in the right place for a great dentist’s office for your kids.
The Bottom Line
When you’re looking for the best dentist office for your needs, you want to explore
1) Online Reviews from previous patients
2) Dental Insurance of the Provider and whether it matches yours
3) Word of Mouth from family and friends for whether you’re a good fit for their dentist office, and
4) The Dental Services each dentist provides, so you’re able to get the help you need. Once you’ve researched these areas of the dentist you’re considering, you’ll feel confident you’ve selected the dentist that is right for you and your family.
Finding the best dentist does not have to be difficult. You just need to do your due diligence and conduct a little research before committing to a new dentist. Once you have done so, you will have obtained the services of a competent professional who will serve the needs of you and your family for years to come.
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