Questions You Should Ask a Dentist Before Making an Appointment

Going to the dentist is a necessary part of staying healthy. Your oral health is just as important as your physical health. Unfortunately, according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, 12% of adults aged 20 to 64 years old have not been to the dentist within the past five years. That can lead to a lot of problems later. If this is your first time with a new dentist, then here are nine questions to ask.

Do You Take My Insurance?

This is an important question to ask since you want to know if you’ll be able to save any money right off the bat. Dental insurance can be a complex thing to figure out, and you want to make sure that the dentist services you have done are covered by the insurance. Otherwise, you might have to go straight to the next question.

Do You Have Payment Plans?

If you find out that the dentist doesn’t accept your insurance, and they are the only one in your area, then you might have to see if you can negotiate a payment plan. That way, you won’t have to worry about paying a large lump sum for your dental services. Knowing that they offer financing can ease a lot of financial stress on your part.

What Experience Do You Have With My Dental Condition?

You might have a unique dental situation that might require certain expertise. Certain dentists might not have the depth of knowledge or experience to handle such a condition. With this question, you can find out ahead of time that this is the case rather than to get there and see that the dentist is not equipped to do it. At Bright Side Dental, we offer various dental services, so don’t hesitate to ask us if we can offer support for your dental issue.

What Treatment Options Do You Suggest?

When you ask this question, you want them to answer the question confidently. They might even go into a detailed plan. If the dentist seems a bit hesitant and even admits that they haven’t treated it that much, then you might want to continue your search. Listen to your gut when it comes to things like this. Otherwise, you could find yourself looking for a dentist to repair what the other dentist did.

What Kind of Technology Do You Use?

You want to get dentist services at a place that has embraced the 21st century. When they do X-rays, they should show up on a computer screen instead of waiting for someone to develop them and bring them into the exam room. They should also be noting things on the computer instead of manila folders. These advances can help your experience go much smoother.

What Are Your Office Hours?

You want a dentist who has somewhat flexible hours. Your job might not let you come in late in the morning, for example. Perhaps the dental office you’re interested in might be open late one weekday to accommodate the workforce, or they might be open on Saturday or Sunday. Find out if you can make an appointment for one of those times to work around your busy schedule.

Do You Take Emergencies?

You want to know what the dynamics are going to be like if you suddenly have tooth pain in the evening on a weekday. Will the dentist do everything in their power to be able to squeeze you in, or are you going to have to find another emergency dentist? Again, it is a very good thing to know in advance. You don’t want to be standing around waiting for someone at the dentist’s office to pick up their phone. However, many have an emergency service that answers calls when it’s past a certain hour. You want to feel great about seeing a dentist who cares about you as a person and is dedicated to being around to help with emergencies.

What Is Your Dental Philosophy?

The answer you want to hear is that they believe in regular dental visits every six months for preventative dental care. That way, they can give themselves the best chance to catch anything that happens in its early stages, like gum disease. That way, it’s likely that it’s going to be reversible. If something has progressed, then they will likely want to do dental surgery and then have you return every three months until they feel you’re in a good state of oral health.

You don’t want to feel like you’re talking to someone who might do something unnecessary to be able to get more money. If they seem too aggressive about a certain procedure, then it’s a good idea to just move on and keep looking. It’s important to find a dentist who has a great philosophy and cares about their patients.

Do You Use Digital or Paper Records?

A lot of dentists and doctors’ offices are saving space by dispensing with paper records. They keep track of all their dentist services on computers. Those huge shelving units are likely going to be a thing of the past. If you’re not sure if you’re comfortable with all your information being stored on a computer, then you can always ask them what kind of safeguards and encryption they use to keep your information safe. This is a legitimate question to ask in today’s society.

Besides directly asking the questions before the appointment, you can also look online and see what people are saying about the quality of the dental services and how the staff treats their patients. The Internet has made that part much easier than just relying on word of mouth from your family members, friends, and co-workers. By searching on Google you’ll get all the results that you need. This is another way to ensure that you make the right choice since many patients write reviews online through various platforms.

It can be hard to find a new dentist in your area, but by asking these questions ahead of time, you can make sure that you’re not wasting both your time and theirs. This is a business, after all. By doing this due diligence, you improve the odds that you’ll have a good experience at your first appointment. Don’t be afraid if something doesn’t seem right. You can almost always find another office to go to. With so many dentist offices across the country, there’s sure to be a wide variety of options for you to choose for yourself and your family.

Are you looking for a family dentist in your area for dentist services? At Bright Side Dental, we’re gladly taking new patients. We’d be happy to ensure your entire family has healthy teeth and gums. Our staff can do everything from dental cleanings and teeth whitening to dental implants. Contact us today with any questions or to make an appointment. We’ll be happy to answer the questions stated in this article or any other you may have before you make an appointment. We want to ensure you feel comfortable visiting our professionals twice a year for various dental services. We look forward to hearing from you.

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