Is there a way to find the best dentist before spending money and realizing you don’t like the dentist?
Alicia L. – Rhode Island
This is tricky. There aren’t any guarantees, but there are some things you can do to give yourself a leg up on finding the best dentist for your situation.
- Decide what you want as your services. Are you only interested in general dental services, such as basic check-ups and cleanings, along with any requisite treatments needed for fillings and such? Or, are you also interested in cosmetic services?
- If you want a general dentist, then decide if you want a mercury-free dentist (meaning doesn’t place silver, amalgam fillings). If you want a mercury-free dentist, they’ll generally advertise as such on their website. Doing a Google search for that term specifically should yield a lot of options for you.
- If you want a dentist who also does cosmetic procedures, such as porcelain veneers, then I would search for a dentist accredited with the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD). Be aware that accreditation is different than membership. Any dentist can become a member of the AACD. Accreditation requires passing stringent exams as well as demonstration of actual cases so they can gauge your artistic ability. Only the top dentists in the world reach accreditation level. But, if you want a smile makeover, you want to make sure it will be stunning.
- After you’ve decided what type of services you want and find a list of dentists from a Google search that meet your criteria, it would be prudent to check their reviews. There are plenty of sites, such as Google, Yelp, etc., which allow patients to document their experiences with service professionals. If everybody is complaining that he are she was rude or doesn’t spend much time with the patient you know not to waste your time.
Other than those things, it’s just a matter of trying the dentist out and seeing how you feel about their work.
Best of luck to you!
This blog is brought to you by Dr. Jerome Cha.