There are many reasons for looking for a new dentist. Relocation, your dentist may have retired, you may have a dental issue you need addresses, want to see a specialist for some complex therapy, or maybe you want a second opinion. Whatever the reason, most rely on recommendations from friends and family and now more and more people are relying on reviews. But family and friends may have different needs than your family. Perhaps you have dental issues and need more than the standard twice yearly dental check-ups.
Dr. Ryne Johnson, prosthodontist and director of Newton Wellesley Dental Partners wants you to know that, "There are different things you should keep in mind when choosing a new dentist in the Boston area".
How long has the dentist practiced? New technologies and slick advertising may imply that seeing a new dentist is warranted but experience matters! New dentists generally do not have the 'frame of reference" that years in practice can offer.
It matters! The changes in practice management have created large groups with considerable turn over. But what about quality of the work? What about longevity of the work? Do you know what the expected outcome will be with someone without a stellar reputation?
Does the dentist use the latest technology? Work with the best materials? Work with the best dental laboratories for aesthetic work? One's expertise directly influences the quality of your work. Most advanced and high-tech dentistry is not taught school. You need to be sure that your new dentist is up-to-date and qualified to perform newly innovated dental procedures and maintains continuing education.
Nearby home, work or school might make keeping appointments easier.
Understand the needs of your family. This could include the need for cosmetic work, a dentist that offers sedation dentistry, or one who takes your particular dental insurance.
When looking for a new dentist, ask these questions:
- Is the dentist accepting new patients?
- How long has the dentist been practicing?
- Does the dentist treat patients with special conditions?
- Is the dentist a pediatric dentist?
- How long is the wait for an appointment?
- Do they have the latest dental technology?
- Does the dentist take continuing education courses and stay up to date with the latest dental technology and techniques?
Regardless of why you are searching for a new dentist, asking family, staying informed and asking the right questions will help you find the right dentist for your family.