Searching for a new dentist can be prompted by lots of variables, depending on where we’re at in life.
For some of us, moving to a new town or city has us again on the search for a trusted, reliable, and professional dental practice. Others simply have had it up to you know where with their current not so trusted, reliable, or professional dentist.
We hope that’s not the case with anyone reading this socially sharing local dentistry blog post.
Some people go on the search for a cosmetic dentist that specializes in divorcee smile makeovers.
Some seek a doctor well known for placing dental implants, and surely some of us look for a dental practice that accepts our insurance.
Whatever the prerequisites are in your personal dental search, we thought it fitting to bring you Part II of the top 5 questions you can ask in your search for a qualified, reputable, and socially communicative dental practice.
Being socially communicative is important to you, right?
What’s a dental practice these days if they’re not on Facebook?
See if these questions jibe with real life experience in your quest for a social local dentist.
What sort of advanced continuing educational opportunities does the practice take part in, above and beyond any state requirements?
With technology advancing faster than we can keep pace a lot of times, it’s important to know what kind of continuing education policies exist at our chosen dental practice.
Our new dentist’s responsibility to continuing education is a good indicator of their commitment to our surrounding community. State requirements differ, and amassing umpteen thousand hours of continuing education may not leave enough time to actually practice dentistry.
Balance should be the goal, a regular schedule of yearly continuing education, backed up by practical application in the dental office often times equates to happy dental patients.
By asking the questions that matter we can best determine an easily navigable course of dental health for our families.
Do you have patient testimonials to review?
Word of mouth has gone digital, but how can we be sure that gleaming (or scathing) review of our newly chosen dentist is accurate?
Ask the practice if they have any testimonials from existing patients, peer experience can be the make or break point when choosing a new dentist.
Credentials, location, and continuing education are important factors, but the words of someone who has sat in the chair offer a peek into our future dental experience.
Beware of the dental practice that has zero existing patient testimonials to review, it either means they don’t care enough to communicate with their patients, or nobody has anything good to say.
A word about online reviews – please consider the validity of online reviews when searching for a new dentist.
Some can be helpful and 100% legitimate, and some can be totally fake – online reviews can be good indicators, but just make sure they are only part of your decision-making process, not the be all end all.
Do you take my dental insurance?
With the economy being what it is presently, financial considerations often take the place of quality of treatment.
We shouldn’t make the mistake of trading a substandard “in network” dental practice with that of a fee for service dental practice just because they don’t take our insurance.
Most practices (and insurance providers) offer some type of middle ground; whether it’s no-interest financing or reduced fees for “out of network” providers, there are options available to new dental patients.
We need to start with our insurance provider and narrow down the search.
If we find a dentist that doesn’t accept our insurance, but we’ve heard great things from friends, open the dialogue with the practice, surely they have financial options available to best serve their surrounding community.
And if not, there is another practice out there that does…we just have to search a little more.
But isn’t our health, and that of our families, worth it?
While the majority of us will never come across someone practicing dentistry without a license, that doesn’t mean all dental practices are equal when it comes to serving their patients.
The list above is a starting point in our search for a good dentist.
We all want a dentist that is an upstanding member of the community, respectful of patient communication, and the leader of an engaging and informative staff.
If you have a dental health question that we haven’t mentioned, please leave a comment and let us know!
In case you missed Part I of this most social of dentistry series, you can see what other questions we recommend asking on your journey – Top 5 Questions to Ask When Searching for a New Dentist – Part I.