Searching for a new dentist can seem like a daunting task. Most likely, you have tons of options in your area and each one seems to offer a different type of dentistry—general, family, pediatric, etc. So, how do you choose the best dentist near you?
In this blog, we’ll give you six tips to make your search simple and rewarding. By the time you reach step six, you’ll be able to say, “I found the best dentist near me.”
To learn more about our dentists at Dental Concepts and Orthodontics, check out the rest of our website. If you live in the Salinas, CA area, we would love to make you a part of our family!
1. Make a list of desired qualities.
You can make a list in your mind or write it down. Either way, understand exactly what you’re looking for to avoid settling for less. Here are some characteristics of the great dentists:
- Quality education and training
- Prioritizes patient comfort, safety, and satisfaction
- Good communication skills
- A welcoming personality
- Interpersonal skills
Add to your list the treatments and services that you want the dentist to provide. Here are examples of the type of dentistry, with specific services in parentheses.
- Cosmetic dentistry (veneers, whitening, smile makeover)
- Orthodontics (for kids or adults, Invisalign, clear braces)
- Pediatric dentistry (fluoride, sealants, mouthguards, simple orthodontics)
- Periodontal treatment (dental cleanings, gum disease treatment, gum surgery)
2. Ask for recommendations.
Ask friends, family, or coworkers who live in the same area who their dentists are. Let them know what you’re interviewing dentists and want one who offers the services on your list, as well as the qualities.
Personal recommendations will help you narrow down your list of candidate dentists—either by marking them off the list or moving them to the top!
3. Go to Google.
The rating system on Google Reviews might be your best resource for finding a dentist. When you type “best dentist near me” in the search bar, a list of dentists and their ratings will pop up. Look for dentists with a rating of 4.0 and higher.
Once you have these, you can also check the practice’s Facebook page for additional reviews.
4. Research the dentist’s website.
If you’re looking for specifics about a dental practice (and we know you are!) this is where you’ll find some of the most important details. Typically, a website will accurately reflect the dental practice. For example, if the website looks professional, you can expect the dental team to be professional as well.
Get out your list and look for this information:
- Info about the dentist(s) and practice
- Services provided
- New patient information
- Financial information
Be sure to view their location and hours to make sure you’ve identified a practical match.
5. Make some phone calls.
Before scheduling an appointment, call each practice to get a feel for the dental team and ask questions about what records new patients need, how to fill out registration forms online, and how far out the dentist is schedule for new patient appointments. When speaking with the team member, observe how he or she makes you feel. As the face (or voice) of the dental practice, this person should treat all patients with kindness, patience, and cheerfulness.
Here are some more questions you may want to ask a new dentist:
- Do they accept your insurance?
- How long has the dentist been practicing?
- What patient comforts and amenities does the office have?
- Does the dentist provide emergency dental care?
- Is there a fee for missed or cancelled appointments?
If there are any other questions on your mind, ask them! The team member should be happy to help you.
6. Schedule an initial consultation.
Once you’ve decided on a dentist to try, it’s time to visit the office in person. This doesn’t mean that your decision is final; you can always change your mind! But if you’ve taken time to manage your list of ideal qualities and done thorough research, we’re almost positive you’ll make the right decision the first time.
Looking for the best dentist in Salinas, CA? Contact our friendly dental team today at 831-443-3633 to schedule an initial consultation.