What to Look For In a Family Dentist

November 14, 2016

A great dentist provides more than a beautiful smile. Your dentist must be someone that you can trust. He or she has to be friendly to you and your family. If you have children, it is important that your dentist is able to comfort them and help ease their fears.

Your family dentist must be able to provide every member of your family the most professional oral health care available. We have come up with a few suggestions to help make the process a little easier when it is time for you to choose a new family dentist.


Ask friends and neighbors who they recommend. Close friends can give you valuable feedback about dentists in the local area from past experience. Search for a family practice online and check the reviews to see what other people have to say.

People will tell you what their opinions are about services that are both pleasant and unfavorable. You will learn quickly which dentists have great reputations and which ones you would be better off avoiding.  

Credentials and Experience

Dentists must graduate an accredited school of dental medicine and pass written exams and have hands-on learning experience in the field. Most dental offices will display their certificates and diplomas. Websites will display much of that information for you to make a decision.

  • Will your children require braces along with oral care? Some dentists only prefer to work with young children and excel in pediatrics. Others will accept patients of any age.
  • What about children and adults who have a fear of going to the dentist? The dental practice may offer sedation dentistry to people that feel uneasy at the office.
  • How long have they practiced dentistry? A great dentist usually has many years of experience. They can perform routine dentistry procedures with ease.

Office Location

You can learn everything that you need to know about dental offices by paying a visit to the location.

  • The office should be comfortable after you walk in the door.
  • The temperatures should be pleasant for clients that visit the office.
  • The facility should use the latest medical equipment available.
  • The interior should be clean and lighting should be pleasant.

The receptionist should be very helpful in answering any questions you have. He or she should be able to explain payment options available to clients, appointment schedules and services offered at the facility. This person should be able to explain to you about any insurance plans that they accept at their office.

Family Dental Needs

Every member of the family will need different dental procedures at some point in their lifetime. Make sure the dentist that you choose can offer plenty of procedures in their office or refer you to a skilled specialist.

Sometimes an office will have several dentists working in the same facility. This helps patients avoid traveling to different locations for oral procedures. The bonus of having an all-in-one dental office is the convenience that it offers patients.

The dental practice may specialize in pediatric dentistry for babies and preschoolers. The facility might offer orthodontic dental procedures for teenagers and offer general adult dental services for Mom or Dad.

They might have a denture lab at the office where patients can have a set of dentures designed and custom fit at the facility. This is an advantage for elderly patients who have trouble getting around to various locations.

Remember that a great dental facility offers your family excellent dental care with confidence and experience. A dentist skilled in oral healthcare is very important to all members of your family to keep them smiling and happy.

Now that you know what to look for in a family dentist, are you wondering how much you should pay for dental insurance? You might also need to know how does dental insurance work. Just as with medical insurance, dental insurance entitles you to benefits such as routine checkups, cleanings, x-rays and other general services. An average policy costs around $360 per year and it covers 80% of the cost for procedures like fillings. The cost for root canals and crowns are usually covered 50%. Some plans do provide more extensive coverage but they will be a lot more expensive.

There are also a variety of coverage types that you can choose from:

  • Preventative coverage includes standard exams, cleanings, x-rays, sealants and more.
  • Basic restorative which consists of treatments that are not significant
  • Advanced restorative such as implants, root canals and crowns
  • Orthodontics such as Invisalign or braces fall in a separate category and they come with a high co-insurance or deductible.

Check out our infographic provided by Glendale Dental Group and find out more about the dental insurance plans, coverage types and the limitations and exclusions you and your family should be aware of.

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