Picking a new dentist? Here’s what you need to know
Choosing a dentist on California’s Central Coast can be challenging. How do you know what the right fit is for you and your family? What services do they provide? Are they accepting new patients? Do they take my insurance? These are all questions that you should ask yourself. If you’re picking a new dentist, here’s what you need to know. Our team at Guittard & Sierra Family Dentistry in Atascadero has created a checklist of all the important factors that should go into your decision-making process when choosing a dentist.
A dentist near you that has a strong educational background and depth of experience in the field is a must. Before visiting the office, spend some time researching where the dentist went to school and how long they’ve been practicing in your area.
Obviously, having a license and being registered in the state where their office is located a necessity. Visit the California licensing website to confirm.
Are They Family-Friendly?
When you are trying to find the best dentist for you and your loved ones, a family-friendly environment can be key to not only feeling comfortable but also determining the best fit.
And there’s no better way to figure this out than calling or emailing and asking about it. Ask questions about the general ages of their patients and what they specialize in.
You can also schedule a time to come into the office and see for yourself. The dentist can be a scary place, so having a clean, welcoming environment can go a long way toward making your family feel more comfortable.
Range of Dental Services
You and your family will want to find a dentist’s office that offers comprehensive dental services and frequently practices the procedures you need — and here’s why.
You wouldn’t go to an orthopedist for a knee problem who mostly does back surgeries. Why would you want a dentist to do your extraction or root canal if that were a procedure that they did every once in a while. A general dentist should be like a general physician or like a quarterback with a comprehensive view of your dental needs and working with specialists who routinely provide certain services as needed.
Keep in mind, things change, and what you and your family need now may not be what it is needed years down the road. Kids grow up, and even your needs as a parent will change over time.
Speak to a dentist and/or their staff to have a full understanding of the services they offer. Check out our comprehensive list of services offered at Guittard & Sierra Family Dentistry.
This is a no-brainer but needs to be said. You don’t want to make a long commute or parking hassle part of a trip to the dentist – especially with today’s fast-paced lifestyle and the demands of your family.
You will want to find a dentist that works close to where you live. Guittard & Sierra is conveniently located in downtown Atascadero with ample parking right next to the Sunken Gardens.
Check the Reviews and Online Reputation
You can learn a lot about a dentist by performing a Google search of their name and location. This includes visiting the website, learning about a dentist’s professional associations and reading online reviews.
Reviews can give you an idea of what to expect with that dental office. Check out our reviews here.
Also, check their social media accounts! This can give you a glimpse inside their practice and the personality of the people who work there. You can find our social accounts @guittardsierra.
Costs and Insurance
It’s very important to take note of the costs of dental treatment and whether that office accepts your dental insurance. Did you know that not all dentists accept dental insurance? Even when a dental office accepts insurance, there’s no guarantee that they accept your plan.
Speak to a dentist and his staff about the costs of routine services such as teeth cleaning, extractions, and dental implants. If you are comfortable with the prices you receive, also ask them about the kind of insurance they accept, if any.
If you don’t have insurance, do they offer plans that allow for more affordable care? Ask about our dental membership care plan and all the benefits it includes.
Ready to Handle Emergencies
Even though a dentist can’t be available 24-7, they need to be there for you when you need them most. How is your prospective dentist’s office ready to handle the dental emergencies of you and your family?
It is wise to speak to a dentist about the emergency services they offer and if they are on-call to perform emergency procedures when needed. This will give you peace of mind that the emergency needs of you and your family will be addressed efficiently when you need them most.
If you’re looking for a new dentist in Atascadero, the team at Guittard & Sierra Family dentistry would be happy to answer all these questions or more. Give us a call or email and let us know how we can help.