As important as oral hygiene is to keeping people healthy, nearly 25% of all Americans do not brush their teeth twice a day as recommended by dentists. This includes 30% of men. Dentists also advise their patients visit a dentist every six months for a cleaning and check up but about 50% do not do that and almost 180 Americans have lost at least one tooth.
Many people are afraid of going to the dentist and getting dental procedures. This is why they do not have a general dentist to go to on a regular dentist. If you are in that position, here are some tips for picking a new dentist.
- Do they take your insurance? All dentists cannot take every kind of insurance. If you can, find dentists in your network. Some providers may be in your network but a procedure you want may not be covered. Dental insurance does not usually cover some dental procedures like dental implants, which are can be a better option for people missing teeth.
- What payment plan will they consider for people without insurance? Not everyone has dental insurance so a lot of dentists will offer payment plans they can offer people do they do not have to go without dental care. Smaller offices with individual providers can be more flexible than offices that are part of a national chain.
- What are their policies on emergencies? If you have an emergency following a procedure, how do they handle that? Problems can happen after a procedure like a root canal or other procedure and you need to know what you can expect from the office after hours. Some have relationships with other practices that have hours that go later or they are open on the weekends.
- Get office location, hours and parking situation. Is the office in a place that is easy for your to reach? Are their offie hours compatible with your work schedule? Do they have parking available? All of these things are important because even if the dentist is the best in the country, it will not matter if you cannot make it to the office. If they do no have parking, ask about public transportation in the area. If you live in an urban area, there might be a bus of subway that can get you from your office or home easily to the office of your dentist.
- What do they do for patients who may be scared? Many people are scared of going to the dentist and they will avoid going because of it. Different dental practices understand this and will go out of their way to make the experience better for them. The best example is in pediatric dentistry but other dental practices offer services like IV sedation for procedures when they know a patient is particularly anxious. Others offer nitrous oxide for cleanings or will prescribe a tranquilizer.