Finding a good dentist is essential to ensure that your dental appointments are as pleasant and productive as possible. Your dentist will partner with you and your family to achieve and maintain the best oral health possible for your mouth, so it’s best to have one dental provider caring for your whole family yearly.
The ideal goal is to become comfortable with professionals you trust for regular dental checkups and emergencies to ensure that you get the best care you need when you need it. But how do you find a good dentist? Dr. Stephen Coates shares what you should consider, how to find dental office options, and how to decide who is the best dentist to care for your oral health.
Consider These Things First
Before you start researching dental providers, try to answer the following questions:
- How important is location? Does the office have to be located nearby?
- Are you willing to travel farther for the right professional?
- What hours are you available for dental appointments?
- Do you need a practice that offers emergency appointments?
Once you have the answers to these questions, you’re ready to interview dental practices to choose the best dentist for you.
Search These Resources
Now that you have a better idea of your needs, it’s time to start finding dental professionals. Here’s how to research your options:
- Try the American Dental Association’s Find-A-Dentist tool to search for a dentist by location, specialty, or name.
- Your local dental society can offer you a listing of the dentists in your area.
- Ask your friends and relatives which providers they have good experiences with.
- Check listings with your dental insurance company.
- Check the health department in your area.
Once you have a list of possible options, it’s time to research them. Look at their websites, social media profiles, and reviews to find the following:
- Is their office close to your home or office?
- Do they offer hours to meet your needs?
- Do they offer emergency appointments?
- Is the dentist in your dental insurance network?
- Are they a member of the ADA?
Once your list is narrowed down, call or visit the remaining candidates. Ask for a consultation and have your questions ready, including:
- Will the dentist take the time to offer tips on preventing dental problems?
- How does the office handle after-hours emergencies?
- Does the practice offer financing options for treatments?
- Will you have access to your dental history? Is it kept in a permanent file?
- Is it easy to make an appointment?
- Is the staff responsive, and how do you contact them?
When you meet with the staff and dentist, mention any anxiety you have and how they can help you manage this during your appointments. Once you’ve viewed the office and met with the staff and dental care team, ask yourself:
- Did the office appear clean and up-to-date?
- What is the atmosphere? Calm or hectic?
- Did the staff use protective gear?
- Did you feel comfortable with the dentist? Did they answer your questions? Were they patient, understanding, and informative?
- Does the dentist have a degree from an accredited institution?
Check Your Insurance Coverage
Before making your final decision, ensure that your dentist accepts your dental insurance and offers payment options for uncovered treatments. If you don’t have dental insurance, make sure payment plans are available.
Choose Your Dentist
Now it’s time to make your decision. Go with your gut feeling. Choose a dentist that listens to you and answers your questions. The staff should be welcoming and tell you about all the services available. Choose a dental office that is clean, comfortable, and up-to-date.
The office of Dr. Stephen A. Coates, DDS, has an inviting and modern office, friendly and helpful staff, and caring dental professionals to serve you. We provide a broad range of services and aim to make you feel comfortable. Our team takes the time to discuss your care, helps you with tips and tools to achieve and maintain good oral health, and guides you through the entire process every time you visit our office. We invite you to check out our blog for resources and helpful information.
Ready to find the best dentist for your family? Schedule your consultation or dental appointment today to discover why our clients love us!