Dentist Interview 101 | How to Choose the Right Dentist
Going to the dentist shouldn’t be something you dread. Instead, your dental visits should be comfortable and relaxed. Being able to trust your dentist is crucial in maintaining your healthy smile. Unfortunately, an estimated 36% of people in the United States have anxiety when it comes to seeing the dentist, which may stop them from receiving proper oral health care.
Knowing your dentist and understanding what to expect before going in for a cleaning can help you feel more confident making that visit a priority. In addition, positive feelings about the dentist will likely keep you returning for your routine visits.
Tips for choosing the right dentist
- Ask for recommendations— You get advice from friends and family on all sorts of things, whether a restaurant choice, a movie to watch, or the latest gadget to buy. So, why not do the same for choosing your dentist? In addition to your friends and family, you can also ask your co-workers, family doctor, or current dentist for recommendations. Make these people your trusted advisors and take what they say into account.
- Create a list— Once you have advice from those you trust, use a handy provider search tool—like ours — to search for dentists near you.
- Schedule a consultation— Your first trip to the dentist doesn’t need to be a cleaning or procedure. Instead, set up a consultation. During this visit, you can meet the providers and staff, and get comfortable before deciding to move forward with the dentist.
Your preliminary visit lets you see the setup of the office. Maybe they have therapy dogs, or perhaps they have relaxing, neutral colors on the wall. They may have televisions or tablets to distract you. These are positive signs that the dentist understands patient anxiety.
- Dentist interview— A consultation is your chance to interview your potential new dentist. Use this time to familiarize yourself with the services, location, and the environment. Make sure to prepare questions and address any requirements you have before committing to an appointment. That way, you know what to expect from your ongoing relationship.
- Tailor your visits— Once you have met with your new provider, you can request items that may make your appointments more pleasant. Scared of dental tools? You’re more than welcome to request they keep them out of sight. Prefer to have music playing during your appointment? You can bring headphones or use a pair from the office, if available, to feel more comfortable.
- Insurance accepted– When you see a Delta Dental in-network dentist, that dentist has already agreed to accept predetermined fees for services with Delta Dental. Our network of dentists also agrees not to send patients a bill when Delta Dental contracted fees are less than their own typical charges. That means using a dentist that accepts your insurance will help you get the most out of your dental benefits.
Using an in-network dentist makes for an easy payment process. There’s no need to pay any costs upfront. Instead, we will pay your in-network dentist directly. Then, we’ll send you an Explanation of Benefits (EOB) notice. This explains the costs you’re responsible for after we compare your plan to the dentist’s charges. You’ll only ever pay the amount indicated on your EOB statement. Click here to learn more about how your Explanation of Benefits works.
These tips can help you feel comfortable choosing the right dentist for you.
- Read more about ways to eliminate dental fear and anxiety on our blog.
*Updated September 2022