Dental insurance is typically not required to visit a dentist, but it does help to know that at least a portion of your care is covered. Once you have dental coverage, one of your first steps is to find a dentist who can help you determine the best ways to take care of your teeth and gums while maximizing the benefits. As you begin your search, you can use these four strategies to find a general dentist that can take care of all of your family's needs.
Consider Their Experience With Your Family's Age Range
The majority of dentists work with people of all ages, but there are some who have a particular knack for working with special populations. For instance, you might want to know that a dentist is capable of providing care for your senior parent if you will also be taking them to their appointments. Alternatively, parents often prefer to go to a family dentist who is comfortable with younger children and teens. Establishing the same dental home for all of your family members helps to build a stronger relationship that makes caring for everyone's teeth easier.
Inquire About Important Areas of Specialization
Your family may also have special dental care needs. For example, your child may have a behavioral disorder and may need a dentist who is capable of making accommodations to help keep them comfortable in the chair. Some dentists specialize in the treatment of gum disease, and others are skilled at performing dental implant procedures. If you have a known dental health issue in your family, then make sure the dentist that you choose is ready to treat the problem.
Ask About New Policies Regarding COVID-19
The pandemic has made safety and hygiene even more important in the dental field. For your family's comfort, ask the dentist about how they protect patients when they visit the office. For instance, the dentist may limit patient visits so that only one or two people are in the building at the same time. They may also offer additional handwashing opportunities or be able to tell you about their strategies for infection control.
Plan for a Simple First Visit to Get to Know the Dentist
After learning more about the dentist, you will want to make a personal visit to find out how well they work with your family. Ideally, this visit should be kept simple. You might choose to go for a cleaning or to have a routine exam. If it has been a long time since you have been to the dentist, then this can help you to ease back into the routine while making sure that the new clinic is a good fit.
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