Choosing the right dental clinic can lead to significant health outcomes. Finding the right one for your needs, though, requires some thought. You can compare different dentists and their practices by looking at these five criteria.
Some folks need more services than others. This is especially true for families that need to find a dental clinic. Ask about the services available at the practice. Also, ask who provides the services. It isn't uncommon for dentists to hire hygienists to handle teeth cleanings. You will want to know who the hygienist is and research them in addition to the dentist.
If the clinic doesn't offer particular services like orthodontics or oral surgery, then ask who they commonly refer their patients to. Even if you don't expect to ever use those services, it is still good for you to know where an office's referrals typically go so you can research the other doctors.
Especially if you or a loved one deal with frequent dental emergencies, the proximity of the dental clinic matters. Also, the location matters in terms of convenience. If you have to leave an hour early just to find a parking space, that's a different experience than going to a practice with more convenient options. The location's accessibility also is important. Folks who use wheelchairs, for example, will want to visit a practice that offers long ramps, wide hallways, and spacious rooms to maximize access.
As much as you might like one dental clinic versus another, your insurance network is going to be a factor. Contact the practice and your insurer to find out if your policy will pay for care at the office.
When you're first contacting a dental clinic, take note of the staff's communication skills. Do people get back to you quickly when you request information? Are they courteous? Unless you're extremely lucky, there's a good chance you're going to have some not-so-great days at a dentist's office just because fillings and extractions aren't fun. You don't want to deal with confusion when you're in that condition. If the staff communicates well now, then you'll be better off down the road when you're in pain and feeling tipsy.
Recommendations and Reviews
Ask for recommendations. Check reviews. Look for commonalities among the various things that people say. If folks rave about how the dentists work with kids, for example, then that's a plus for a family.
Contact a local dental clinic to learn more.