Questions for Your New Dentist

Did you know that nearly 50% of Americans don’t visit the dentist regularly? That’s a staggering statistic considering the slew of serious health conditions that have been linked to periodontal disease. Conditions like heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis, pregnancy complications and dementia have all been connected to the often preventable oral disease, making it extremely important to take care of your gums and teeth. With proper dental hygiene, including brushing twice a day, flossing regularly, and bi-annual visits to your dentist, most can avoid periodontal, or gum disease, making it shocking that more people don’t visit their dentist more often.

If you’ve made the decision to take your health more seriously and are ready to go to the dentist, there are a number of questions that you should ask both before your visit and during your appointment to ensure the best experience possible. According to a recent Fox News article, here are 9 questions to consider. When choosing a dentist:

  1. Does this dental office accept my insurance? If you have dental insurance, you’ll want to find a practice that accepts it, and if not than you might want to consider purchasing a policy. This is especially true if you haven’t been to the dentist in awhile.
  2. How much will my procedures likely cost? Before you have any procedures completed, you might want to find out an estimated cost. If you have the time, you may want to compare these estimates across several practices to be sure you’re getting a fair price.
  3. What can I expect at my first appointment? Sometimes the best way to overcome anxiety about a dental appointment is to mentally prepare by learning what you can expect. You can find out what your first appointment will be like at Miami Dental Sedation Spa, here.
  4. How and when will I be expected to pay? All offices have their own payment policies, so asking ahead of time is a good idea.
  5. How are instruments sterilized? Your anxiety about dental visits might be put at ease if you have a better idea about how the office protects its patients from disease. An office that doesn’t heat sterilize all equipment should cause you to raise an eyebrow.
  6. Does the dentist keep up with the latest dental advancements? Like many medical fields, technological advancements mean that treatment options are always evolving. Because these options are often cheaper, less time consuming and virtually pain-free, it’s in your best interest to find a dentist up to date on the latest developments.
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    During your appointment:

  8. Do you have any recommendation for my diet? Your dentist can tell a lot about what you eat based on your exam. If you consume a lot of sugar or acidic foods, he’ll likely tell you to lay off a bit and increase your fruit and veggie intake.
  9. What care and maintenance schedule do you recommend? Everyone’s health requires unique needs. You may need to visit your dentist more often than normally recommended. Additionally, brushing and flossing alone may not be enough to maintain good oral health at home. Together, you and your dentist will come up with a care plan that is tailored to your needs.
  10. Do you recommend following up with my family doctor? Your mouth is a window to the rest of your body and your dentist can often see signs of other health conditions. If he sees early evidence of another issue, he’ll likely want you to follow up with your general practitioner.

These questions are of course only suggestions. One of the most important characteristics to find in a dentist is trustworthiness. If you feel comfortable talking to your dentist and trust their professional opinions, you’ve found the right one for you.

Written by Mark Paulsort
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