What Should I Look For When Choosing A Dentist?

Even if you brush and floss your teeth daily, both essential for keeping your teeth and gums healthy, this is not a substitute for seeing your dentist for regular checkups, including cleanings and examinations. Untreated dental conditions can lead to an increased risk of heart attacks, strokes, diabetes and other medical conditions as well as damaging your oral health.

Although many people dislike or even dread seeing the dentist, if you follow the steps below, and find a dentist that you trust, you may actually come to enjoy your regular visits more. A good working relationship with your dentist is essential to a good experience with dental care. Dr. Tom Trinkner in Columbia, SC presents the following tips for finding and choosing a new dentist.

Choosing A Dentist: Where To Start?

You might try asking friends, family or co-workers for recommendations as they may have a dentist they prefer. You could also ask your doctor or pharmacist for a recommendation. Members of the medical community frequently know one another and may have preferences about whom they collaborate with. Seeing a dentist that has an existing relationship with your doctor or pharmacy may help you better coordinate treatment.

If you’re moving, ask your current dentist for a recommendation about who to see in your new area. Your current dentist may know a colleague that he or she can recommend in the town or area you are moving to. Alternatively, you could use the quick and easy search function of the American Dental Association (ADA) website at www.ada.org. ADA membership is an important quality for your dentist to have as it means that he or she has taken a professional oath to put your health and well-being first and deal with all patients ethically and honestly.

What To Look For In A New Dentist

Once you have gathered a few recommendations for possible new dentists, you might want to call or visit more than one of them to gain a more clear idea of what it will be like to be a patient there. It is essential that you are a good fit with your dentist and his staff in order to build the trust that is necessary in a good doctor-patient relationship.

Here are a few more things to consider when choosing a dentist:

  • Do they accept your dental insurance? This is important.
  • Do their office hours fit your schedule?
  • Is their office located close to your home or office?
  • What is their approach to preventive dentistry?
  • What types of anesthesia do they administer?
  • What are their procedures for after-hour emergencies? Most dentists have arrangements with a colleague or an emergency referral service.
  • Ask them for estimates on some common procedures such as full-mouth X-rays, an oral exam and cleaning, and filling a cavity in case you ever have a lapse in your insurance coverage.
  • What is their missed-appointments policy?

Visiting A Dentist’s Office

Once you decide to visit a dentist’s office, you should be sure to check that their office is neat, clean and orderly and their equipment appears clean and up-to-date? Did you feel their dental staff was kind and courteous? Did the dentist and staff wear gloves and protective gear?

Local Dentist in Columbia, SC

As with choosing any other type of medical service provider, it is important to make sure you’re choosing the best dentist for you. If you’re in the Columbia, SC area and in need of a dentist, Dr. Tom Trinkner may be the dentist for you.

Dr. Trinkner has been practicing since 1985 and was awarded Accredited Member status by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD) in 1998, the first dentist in South Carolina to earn such a distinction. Dr. Trinkner is a leader in cosmetic and restorative dentistry as a local dentist, a national speaker, and a dental educator. Dr. Trinkner maintains many positions and affiliations including:

  • Fellow, Pierre Fauchard Academy
  • Editorial Board, Practical Procedures in Aesthetic Dentistry
  • Editorial Board, Inside Dentistry
  • Former Editor, American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry Journal
  • Member, Academy of General Dentistry
  • Member, American Equilibration Society
  • Member, American Dental Association
  • Member, South Carolina State Dental Society
  • Accredited Member, American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry

If you would like to schedule a consultation or exam with Dr. Tom Trinkner in Columbia, SC, please call 803.400.8729 or schedule a consultation online.