Finding a great dentist can be a daunting task but it need not be. Regular visits to the dentist play a vital role in keeping your oral health in tip-top condition. So how should you go about selecting a dentist? We think you should consider the following questions:
1. Does the dentist have up-to-date technology?
Is the dentist equipped with the most modern of dental technology? Do they continually update their equipment, enhance their skills and techniques to give you the best possible dental care.
2. Does the office environment reflect the services they provide?
Is the office environment clean, comfortable and inviting? Are the magazines current or from 3 years ago? Are the flowers fresh? These may seem like small things but if thought and planning have been put into creating the public spaces in a dental practice it is a good indication the dental team take pride in where they work. If they take pride in this you can guarantee they show equal pride in what they do professionally and offer top-quality dental care.
3. Are the staff friendly and responsive?
Visiting the dentist is never high on anyone’s list of favourite things to do but a dental team who understand what great customer service is will make a huge difference to your experience. Were you greeted by a warm friendly person when you called the office? Was making an appointment easy and were the staff glad to answer any questions? On arrival for your appointment were you greeted with a smile? Did the dentist and staff spend time with you and explain everything?
4. Is the dentist child-friendly?
Children need a dentist who is gentle, patient and accustomed to working with kids. iPads with games in the waiting rooms and current issues of child-friendly magazines help children feel comfortable before an appointment. Having a dentist and dental hygienist who are friendly, offer positive reinforcement and helps kids to feel good about taking care of their teeth is also essential. Show bags at the end of an appointment also brings out the smiles.
5. Is the dentist adult-friendly?
It may sound like an odd question but a good dentist needs to be able to sustain an environment that is both child and adult-friendly. Are there two waiting areas? One where a families can wait and one where another client can wait without being disturbed. Is today’s newspaper available along with current issues of a variety of magazines? Are there mobile charging stations available and free WiFi? When you are with the dentist do they have a pleasant chair-side manner? Do they explain what they are doing throughout the appointment? Do they educate you about how to improve your oral health for the long term future and not just fix the problems? Do they talk to you about treatment options so you can make educated decisions about your treatment?
6. Is there a dental hygienist on staff?
It is absolutely necessary to see a dentist but it is also necessary, in our opinion, to see a dental hygienist. Dental hygienists are the teeth cleaning experts. They will spend much more time with you than your dentist can to ensure your teeth are thoroughly cleaned. They are also highly skilled at educating you about oral health care, taking x-rays and taking impressions to construct mouthguards.
7. Do they provide after-hours emergency treatment for clients?
Cracked or broken teeth, gum infections, pain from an infected tooth, a broken denture, accidents from a fall or collision, a sporting injury or an injury obtained during an assault can all require emergency treatment. Having a dentist that provides after-hours care in an emergency is a real comfort.
8. Does the dentist offer Video Consultations?
Video consultations are used for numerous reasons.
- If you are looking for a new dentist, it gives you the opportunity to meet them for the first time from the comfort of your own home in a non-confronting way. You will have the opportunity to talk about what you are looking for and what services they offer. It is also a huge advantage for people with dental anxiety to get to know the dentist before visiting the practice. It helps make their first appointment a more enjoyable experience.
- If you have a dental emergency being able to speak face-to-face to a dentist and have them assess your emergency via a video conference can be an advantage.
- If you are considering a cosmetic procedure like Invisalign or whitening and need further information about the procedure a video consultation may be an option.
To find out if Ian Gurner Dental Care is a good fit for your family and their dental care needs visit the links in this article or call our Welcome Desk on (03) 6231 3645 to request an appointment.