June 5, 2021
Hard or soft bristle tooth brush for the best clean?
Choosing the right dentist is challenging. The internet is a great tool to seek out information for everything we want, from recipes to DIY jobs. But is it that easy to find a medical professional, like a dentist, reading blogs and looking at websites?
The simple answer is no.
There are two aspects of a medical professional which I think most people look for,
The technical skills needed to perform dentistry is very demanding and precise. How long a filling will last or a prosthesis remains in function depends very much on the individuals’ circumstances and quality of workmanship. Quality of care is dependent on time taken to complete the task .
Knowing if a dentist does good work cannot be determined by a patient, unless that patient is a fellow dentist who can examine the work themselves! I would like to think that the majority of qualified dentist from reputable Universities have a base level of competence to manage most dental conditions well.
However, the difference between good and excellent is difficult to determine. Like most things in life, a job done well is not only dependent on core competence but also the personality of the individual. Some have a greater eye for detail and seek to achieve a result greater than acceptable. The delivery of excellence should never be judged by glitzy websites or fancy equipment, this is marketing.
Technical competence of a professional is something very difficult to judge. My advice is-word of mouth, no pun intended, ask close family and friends who they see. Have fillings lasted many years without needing to be redone frequently in a short time, like months? How comfortable is their denture? Online reviews do not provide evidence of technical ability.
When looking for a dentist for you or your family, the person you choose must be someone you can relate to at a personal level. They don’t need to be your friend but you must be comfortable interacting with them.
These are some aspects to consider when you are trying to find a suitable dentist:
Finding a dentist to suit is difficult. Recommendations from trusted personal sources are still the best options to short list your search for a dentist. Especially when the person you are asking have similar values and personality to you. If they have been happy with their dentist for some time it is likely you will too.
If you are moving interstate or cannot see your dentist anymore because of distance, ask your existing dentist to provide some suggestions. I have often spoken to colleagues to ask for some recommendations for our long standing patients moving interstate or into regional areas. A recommendation from another clinician is the best lead you can have when looking for a new dentist.
I hope this helps you in some way, find a dentist you will be happy with.