So you just moved to a new area or just looking for a change. How do you find a new dentist?
You want to find someone that you communicate well with. So, I am naturally attracted to difficult skills; I completed a masters in vocal performance and now I am trying to get better at golf. Why do I mention this? Because both disciplines are notoriously difficult to master and usually require a teacher to guide you. And the key to getting better is to find the right teacher for you.
I’ve had a voice teacher tell me to do weird things—for instance, to control my diaphragm muscle when breathing to support my singing. Guess what, the diaphragm muscle is an involuntary muscle! So how am I supposed to make it descend and help me support my breath? In golf, I was told countless times to not look up when swinging the golf club. I tried staring down at the ground even after I thought I hit it 300 yards away, but lo and behold, the ball went to my direct right for an actual gain of 10 yards or less.
These are examples of times when a teacher or expert tells you to do things based on their own experience but fails to talk your language. The same thing may happen in the dental office; after all, we all have different oral health goals and aesthetics, so it important to find someone that listens to you and helps you achieve your oral health goals.
So how do you know if a dentist is right for you? Well, as a voice and golf student, I tried out many different teachers. They were all accomplished musicians. But it took a few tries before finding the right one for me. So how would you interview your prospective dentist? You can start with your friends that go to the dentist. Don’t just ask the typical questions like, was he or she nice? Ask how well the dentist communicates. Ask if he or she explains any procedures for you. Ask if your friend feels like the dentist understands what they want.
If you do not have a friend to go by, you can read through content on the office website and online reviews. It’s a bit more difficult to get a feel for a person from online content but you can learn about the dentist’s accomplishments and commitment to continuing education. Look for thoughtful reviews that reflect on the personality of the dentist.
After due research, there are a few ways to “interview” your prospective dentist. You can go in for a routine cleaning and ask to chat with the dentist afterwards. If you want to directly get to the point, you can ask for a consultation for any issue you may be having. Most dentists wouldn’t mind you coming in to meet you. Just think of it as a speed date to find your dental “one.”
Anyone is welcome to interview me at Personalee Dental. Look forward to talking with you soon!