Moving to a new place entails a number of intertwined tasks. On top of the packing and coordinating with movers, your change of address comes with a long list of to-do items that all need your attention immediately. But there is one thing that most people neglect to do when moving to a new place, and that is finding a dentist. Your dental healthcare should be prioritized, which means that you need to find an accessible dental office in your new location. Here are tips for finding the perfect dentist for you.
1. Check for ADA Certification.
The American Dental Association is a professional organization that promotes quality dental health to the public. Certification from the ADA encourages the dentist to comply with a code of professional and ethical conduct when providing services to patients. Dentists have to pass assessments from the ADA to receive this certification. If you need a new dentist, check if he/she is ADA-certified. The ADA website provides a Find a Dentist tool for your reference.
2. Get Recommendations From Trusted Sources.
A great dentist will not have any trouble finding patients. If you want to know where the best dental office is in your new location, ask friends, acquaintances, neighbors, co-workers, community leaders, or even your new landlord. You could also check recommendations online, especially through social media. You could find groups in your locality that could offer information about a reliable dental professional in your area.
3. Schedule an Appointment.
A good rule of thumb to follow when looking for a new dentist is to set an appointment first just to get to know how the dentist works. During the consultation, observe the clinic, equipment, staff, procedures, etc. Ask questions from the staff and the dentist, particularly about issues and concerns that you have. Maybe you have a fear of syringes or are concerned about insurance coverage. “The initial consultation is a great opportunity to discuss these things with your dentist,” according to drkaltio.com. To get the best choice, set an appointment with at least three dentists in your area. When you are done with all three, you can make a decision on which professional to choose.
4. Consider What Your Family Members Need.
Each member of your family may have different needs. Keep these in mind when looking for a new dentist. Consider their ages, preferences, and other special requirements. If you have a young child, for example, you might need someone who is trained in pediatric dentistry. If there is a family member who needs braces, you need a dentist who has had training and experience in orthodontics.
5. Get Your Old Records.
Now is a good time to ask your old dentist to have your dental records sent to the new dentist. The content of the records, including checkups, x-rays, cosmetic procedures undertaken, medications, and surgeries performed are important to your new dentist. This information will be invaluable to determine how best to approach any dental concern you may have now and in the future.
6. Make the First Evaluation.
Even after you have already chosen a dentist, you still need to evaluate his/her services. This will help you verify if your choice is the best. To make the first evaluation, schedule a routine dental cleaning. This is a simple, very basic dental procedure that all dentists are trained to do.
When you visit the dental office, observe how the staff greets and treats you. Very often, the way the staff treats its patients is indicative of the quality of care that the dental office offers. Take note of how they accept and meet appointments, how they treat other patients, and how quickly they can reply to inquiries. You should also take note of the following:
– The appearance of the dental office (location, cleanliness, orderliness, equipment, etc.)
– The dentist’s chairside manner
– The staff’s behavior and treatment of patients
– The dental equipment and accessories
When you are talking to the dentist and staff, observe if they listen to you and value your input. The dentist should also give you sound advice. For example, if he/she tells you to brush twice every day using a toothpaste, does he/she recommend a trusted brand?
Never treat choosing a new dentist lightly. You want someone who is not only a skilled and experienced professional but also a partner who can help you achieve your best health, especially in your new home.