Finding a great dentist you can trust is like finding the right hairstylist or romantic partner: it may take some time, but it’s totally worth it. Dishonest dentists cost insurance companies $12.5 billion each year. And if you had unpleasant experiences in the dental chair as a child or younger adult, you need to find a dentist who understands your anxiety.
Fortunately, there are a lot of competent, caring dentists out there, and it’s possible to find one you’re comfortable with. Here are some tips on how to find the best dentist near you.
A good first step is to put the word out that you’re searching for a new dentist. Ask friends, family members, and colleagues who they go to for dental care and how they like their dentist. Post on Facebook that you’re looking for recommendations.
Even the highest reviews can’t beat recommendations from people that you know personally. They will be able to give insights on how friendly the staff is and available payment plans.
The American Dental Association (ADA) website is another good source if you’re wondering “Is there a good dentist near me?” Use the find-a-dentist section to search for ADA member dentists by location and specialty.
Although there are no strict requirements for a dentist to join the ADA, it’s expected that members post a professional profile and commit to providing compassionate care and allowing the patient to make decisions regarding treatments.
Whether you get dentist recommendations or not, you can always search for dentists near you on consumer review sites such as Yelp and study the reviews. One negative review in a sea of five-star testimonials doesn’t necessarily mean you shouldn’t consider that dentist. However, if patient reviews are overwhelmingly negative, it may be best to keep looking.
Some dentists specialize in performing cosmetic dentistry, root canals, dental implants, and other procedures. If this is important to you, then consider dentists who can cater to your needs.
If you have dental anxiety, find out from the dental practice’s website and reviews if this is something they can help you with. They may offer sedation dentistry and equip their office with TV screens to help patients feel more relaxed.
Lastly, it’s a good idea to have a look through the dentist’s website and social media channels to see if they’re friendly and engaging with their patients on Facebook and Instagram. If the same staff members show up in photos, including older ones, that’s a good sign that they enjoy working at the practice.
A dentist’s website should include a brief bio including where they went to dental school and any specialties they hold. Their website should include photos of the office and treatment areas so you can confirm they’re modern and comfortable looking.
It’s not hard to find the right dentist near you, but it does require some detective work. During your initial visit, you should feel comfortable and have good communication with the dentist. If anything doesn’t feel quite right you should keep searching for a better fit.
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