Did you know that as many as half of people with dental insurance do not go to the dentist? The dentist is one of the most common fears people have, but it can be due to distrust or lacking time and money to visit the dentist as well.
Have you ever wondered how to find the best dentist to fit your needs? Here are some tools to use when you look for a new dentist.
Look at Online Reviews
Online reviews are a powerful tool to analyze what other customers think of a business. Reputable review sites do not allow businesses to modify or delete negative reviews, meaning that you can view honest feedback.
Online review sites also give businesses the opportunity to respond to reviews. For example, if a patient leaves a negative review but the rest of the feedback is positive, you can see if the dentist remedied the situation.
You can sort online reviews based on the dentists in your area that are highly rated. If you want to find a good dentist that is local, you can use a search engine and type in “dentist near me.”
Even if a dentist seems like a good deal, a low rating on an online review site can show you that maybe you should stay away. Read patient feedback thoroughly and look for keywords to help influence your decision.
Ask for Recommendations
For an honest dentist recommendation, it is always a good idea to ask family and friends. If your loved ones are local, then you may even be able to find a nearby walk in dentist office that takes new patients.
If someone feels confident recommending a dentist to you, then they are a good judge of character, professionalism, and the quality of work performed by the practice.
Some practices may even offer a first-time services discount if you were referred by friends or family.
Search Your Insurance Network
If you have dental insurance, then you need to find a provider within your network. This will help you get the most coverage and greatly reduce out-of-pocket costs.
The easiest method is to look on your insurance website and search based on your plan coverage. Many sites also show you how far away the practice is from your home and even come with ratings and reviews.
Alternatively, if you find a good dentist, you can look on their website. They often have a list of insurance plans that they work with. You may also be able to call or email them to see if your specific plan is covered.
Your options may be limited depending on the type of insurance coverage that you have. HMO networks tend to cost less, but you have limited providers to work with. For PPO coverage, you will pay more out-of-pocket but you have many more providers to choose from.
Ask About Services Offered
When you search for dental care, you need to make sure that they have the right dental treatment options available for your needs. Usually, the website will have a list of basic services that they offer, but it is always a good idea to call and ask.
For instance, if you require a lot of root canals, then you should find a dentist that does endodontic treatment in-house. This will save you a lot of money compared to visiting an endodontist outside of your normal dental practice.
If you are interested in straightening your teeth, ask about whether the dentist offers orthodontic or alignment services as well. It may be easier to go to the same place for your orthodontic treatment and dental care.
Generally, any service offered in-house is cheaper than visiting a specialist for the same service. You can also find a dentist that specializes in certain areas, such as dentures or implants.
Compare Pricing Models
Money is a huge factor when it comes to choosing a dentist. A good dentist will emphasize preventive measures, such as taking care of your teeth at home, rather than jumping straight into costly work.
If you have not had problems with your teeth previously and your dentist insists you need a lot of work done, this is a red flag. It may be in your best interest to get a second opinion on your dental treatment plan.
Many dental insurance plans offer coverage for a second opinion. This way, if you feel that a dentist wants to charge you too much for the services offered, then you can go to another practice and get a second quote.
The internet is a great tool to see a good estimate of what you should pay for different services. Although every provider is different, you can tell something is off when they charge way over what the service usually costs.
Interact With Staff
The atmosphere in the dental office can be a great indicator of a competent dentist. When you visit the dental office, look to see if their reception and the welcome area are inviting.
If staff seem happy to work there and attentive to your needs, it is a good sign that you will get prompt and thorough service. A great dental practice cares about its patients and wants to make sure their teeth are well taken care of.
In addition, talk to the dental hygienist or assistant while they are doing things like x-rays, exams, or your basic teeth cleaning. You can ask them what they love about working at the practice or how long they have known the dentists.
Find the Best Dentist for Your Needs
If you need to search for a new dentist, you should not have to worry about getting great dental care. With this guide, you can work with the best dentist and feel comfortable every time you visit.
Want to learn more about how to take the best care of your body? Check out our site for more tips and tricks to maintain optimum health.