Finding a family dentist that provides all of the dental services you and your family needs to be a priority if you are moving to a new area – or if you have been dissatisfied with your current dentist. You want to make an informed and educated decision. There are several things to take into consideration before making your choice.
What to expect from a family dentist
Since regular and proper dental care is important for the overall health of you and your family – there are some basic elements that you should expect of the dental practice that you choose.
- Acceptance of most insurance plans
- Calming surroundings
- Experience with children
- Friendly staff
- Proper training
Don’t be shy in asking to visit a dental practice and meet the providers before you make your decision on who to call your family dentist. This is especially true if you are moving to a new area and have limited resources to get recommendations.
Elements to inquire about
Aside from the minimum requirements for choosing a dentist for your family – you will want to ask more questions to get a better idea of how the practice works. It’s important that you understand the services they provide. Having a full-service dentist is important – less expensive, and less stressful. You should ask if they offer the following services:
- Cosmetic dentistry
- Dental implants
- Head and neck exams
- In-office teeth whitening
- Oral cancer screening
- Oral surgery
- Restorative dentistry
- Root canals
- Tooth extractions
- Treatment of periodontal disease
The dentist you choose should offer all of these services in order for you to have a provider that can take care of all of the dental needs for each member of your family. You never know when you may need restorative dental procedures – including a root canal. Once you have established a bond with your dentist – you want to know that you won’t have to go elsewhere to have an extraction or implants.
Some dental practices provide basic services but then refer you out for services. This can be stressful, inconvenient and costly. Not only should you inquire about specific services – but you will also want to ask about the technology they use in their practice. It is important to choose a dental practice that is equipped with state-of-the-art dental equipment.
No details are too small
Also important in choosing a family dentist is how their practice is managed. No one likes to wait an unusually long time in the waiting room. Except in the case of emergencies, you should expect on-time scheduling of your appointments.
You should also expect minimal paperwork and pleasant and attentive staff. If you or a family member has stressful reactions to dental visits – the dental office staff should be understanding and help ease anxious patients. Dental anxiety can be lessened and even avoided by trained dental professionals. This is especially important for children – so they can get the dental treatments they need with a minimal amount of stress.
If you have dental insurance, be sure to ask if it is accepted before you make your decision on your dentist. Ask about their payment options if you don’t have insurance. Many dental practices offer in-house financing as well as working with third-party dental care financing companies so that everyone can have proper dental care, regardless of their financial situation.
Even with stellar recommendations - you may need to visit more than one dental practice before finding the right fit for you and your family. The best way to find the best dentist for your family is to call for a consultation. Most dentists are happy to consult with new patients at no charge. You want a dentist who combines knowledge, experience and personalized care to improve their patients’ dental health. Meeting one-on-one and getting a feel for their office will help you choose the right family dentist for you and your family.