Taking care of your oral health means more than just brushing regularly and avoiding sugary foods. For the best care, it’s essential to see a dentist every five to six months for a checkup and cleaning. The first step in doing all this is to find a dentist you are comfortable with and then arrange an appointment.
Location and working hours
Choose a dentist that works in your neighborhood or close to work. This will make it easier to schedule an appointment and be there on time. Also, make sure that the office operates during hours when you are available.
Each state maintains a dental board (and/or dentistry website) that lists all accredited dentists and tracks their work history and claims. As a patient, search the online reviews and practice history to see what other people have to see about the dentist.
Does the dentist offer various payment options or accept insurance? If your health care plan permits specialist referrals, can the dentist facilitate it?
Additionally, various practices will charge differently, so get as many estimates as possible to see which suits your pocket. Even with health insurance, you may have to meet some costs out of your pocket.
Find out if the dentist can offer emergency services should you have one, either after office hours or during the weekends. A good dentist should be able to see you during an emergency rather than refer you to the local hospital.
Dr. Leslie Griesdorf is a former dentist who lives in Toronto, Ontario.