What Should I Look For When Choosing A Dental Practitioner

Isn’t it funny how when you begin to read an article about the dentist or see an advertisement on a billboard as you sit stuck in traffic on the highway that you automatically start feeling around your mouth with your tongue to check that everything is in order?

I’m not sure how much inspecting you can do just by having your tongue glide over your teeth but the main objective is to at least make you aware that you may have an upcoming dental appointment you nearly forgot about, or that it has been ages since you last had a checkup and it’s about time you booked in an oral hygiene session.

For some people, simply hearing the word “dentist” gives them nightmares, and I can understand why. If they are from the older generation and have had treatments done with not as efficient or effective anesthetics then just thinking about the possibility of experiencing that kind of pain again would make anyone run for the hills.

Thankfully as times have moved on and like with all things technology and medicine have evolved, so have the methods and procedures, becoming less invasive and completed in half the time, all without feeling a thing.

If you have a minute, you can see here  how some of the instruments and medical procedures were performed from “back in the day” when the dental industry seemed to be filled with doom and gloom.

Nowadays there are queues of people looking for appointments, teeth need to be whiter, straighter, or the equivalent of a Hollywood smile to keep up with the Jones’s.

The only downside to it all is the fact that you can’t feel half your face for a couple of hours and are on constant dribble patrol with a tissue glued to your hand, a great look.

Dentists of today.

I have yet to have treatment from a dentist who is over the age of say 50, where have they all gone? They seem to be younger with each appointment, and kudos to them for finding their niche so young.

There is a snag when it comes to looking after your teeth though, knowing which clinic to register with, and do you focus more on services offered, the aesthetics and cleanliness of the facilities, or does the practice need to tick all the boxes before you even put it on the list of considerations?

This is even trickier when there are children involved, thankfully for us, we have a kid-loving dentist and I never have an issue telling the children they have an upcoming appointment, and the fact that they get a sticker at the end of it all doesn’t hurt either.

It does come with the standard anti-sweets campaign of course, but all dentists know the child will never stop sugary treats altogether, they do recommend healthier options which you can read about in this link and perhaps swapping out one or two in their lunchboxes as an experiment and see how it goes down.

The various options available and facilities catering to individual needs can be overwhelming, and simply reading the brochures all claiming to be the best soon becomes daunting and you end up throwing your hands up in the air with it all and leaving it the side for another 6 months. This doesn’t have to be the case if you take a step back and a few moments planning.

Let’s see how best to go about the final decision and what makes people sway one way or the other when choosing the dentist for them and their family.

5 tips on what to look for in a dental practice.

  • This was a big must for myself and the children, especially because we all know kids say it like it is and they will have none of it. Look for cleanliness and clean practices such as sanitizing sprays and handwashing stations. If they feel comfortable they are more likely not to put up a fuss when its appointment time.
  • Don’t feel obligated to stay within your village or town, catchment areas are not relevant like with schooling, so if you find a practice that appeals to you then you should go there. A few minutes extra drive is nothing compared to a difference in service or quality you feel you will receive.

Customer service applies to all industries, not just hospitality, you are paying for the treatment after all, whether you need it or want it.

Many success stories have come from professional and courteous practices, for example, a dentist in Roanoke who has years of experience in the industry understands that the client needs to feel safe and secure when attending your treatment chair, this not only has customers leaving happy but they are more likely to recommend to others for follow up business.

  • Operating hours. As a parent with a full schedule, this is vital, the last you need is having to take off work and taking the kids out of school for a half an hour appointment in the middle of the day. The website or brochure should have these visible.
  • There are those times when that candy bar looks too good to pass over and suddenly you find yourself with a cracked crown or tooth, ask and enquire about out of hour’s treatments and emergencies, because you just never know.
  • I left this till last because it may seem silly to check up on this, but ensure they are licensed, legal, and certified to carry out the procedures you require. Qualifications are usually proudly displayed in their offices or reception, if not this should immediately raise a red flag and in my opinion, it would be best to look elsewhere.

The main objective when it comes to your dentist choice, teeth maintenance, and oral hygiene is that you have taken action to be more vigilant with cleanliness and caring for your teeth.

See here for great ways to remind yourself of important appointments and events, but most importantly look after your pearly whites. Lord knows they don’t hang around forever.