Finding the right dentist is a quite tedious job because when the teeth of you and your family are concerned, you need the best care and you feel always worried about whether you will get the same or not. There are literally thousands of dentists practicing all through the country in specific locations, with some or the other specialization and their own office hours. So, how can you narrow down your search, say for example for a dentist in Oakland CA, who is just right for you? More to your confusion, names of some dentists end with DDS (Doctor of Dental Surgery), while some others flaunt a degree DMD (Doctor of Dental Medicine) – is there any difference? But, don’t worry! Both of them study the same things and the degrees are only to indicate that the doctor has got a proper training to practice as a general dentist.
Understand What You Want
You might notice that general dentists call themselves experts in cosmetic dentistry or a family dentist. This only means that the doctor offers cosmetic dental services or can treat your entire family. However these are not dental specializations. Dental specialists include periodontists (specialists of gum diseases), pedodontists (or pediatric dentists – specialized to treat kids’ dental problems), prosthodontists (specialized in restoration), endodontists (root canal specialists), orthodontists (bite specialists) and oral and maxillofacial surgeons (oral surgery and tooth extraction).
If you are suffering from symptoms like severe toothache, bleeding gums or continuous jaw pain, it is easy to assume readily that you need to visit a dental specialist. However, before you could infer about something, most specialist dentists want that you first visit a general dentist to get a comprehensive dental exam done.
After you visit the general dentist, if s/he decides that the treatment you need is beyond the realm of his or her ability, s/he will refer you then to an appropriate specialist dentist. However, you have to keep in mind that several general dentists perform some of the same procedures as specialist dentists, such as root canals together with dental crowns, dental bridge procedures and wisdom teeth extraction.
Questions to Ask
Don’t hesitate to ask questions to decide that the dentist is perfect for you and your family. It is important to ask questions to get thorough information about the dentist as well as for determining that his or her office location, timings etc are perfect for you or not. Some questions you can ask are:
About his or her training – Inquire about the training and experience of the dentist regarding the procedures you want to undergo.
Office location – You should be able to reach the dentist’s office immediately in case of emergency. Consider the length of time and convenience to access the office.
Timings and availability of emergency care – It is recommended to inquire about whether the dentist works in emergency conditions. Also ask whether s/he is available at evenings and weekends.
Fees and payments – Inquire whether the dentist accepts your dental insurance and how much you would have to pay from your pocket.
Choose your dentist carefully with respect to all these points so that you and your family don’t have to undergo difficult situations.