Going to the dentist shouldn’t be something you dread and being able to trust your dentist is crucial in maintaining preventive care. Your dental care experience should be one in which you feel comfortable and taken care of. An estimated 36% of people living in the United States suffer from some sort of anxiety when it comes to seeing the dentist, which may stop them from receiving proper oral health care.
Getting to know your dentist before going in for a cleaning can help you feel more comfortable which, in turn, will likely keep you going back to the dentist.
Tips to choose the right dentist
Solicit recommendations — You get advice from friends and family on all sorts of purchases, whether it’s a restaurant or the latest gadget. So, why not do the same for your dentist? Make these people your trusted advisors and take what they think into account.
Create a list — Once you have advice from those you trust, use a handy provider search tool —like ours — to search for providers.
Schedule a consultation — Your first trip to the dentist doesn’t need to be about having work done right away. Instead, set up a consultation. You can visit the office, meet the providers and staff, and get comfortable with everything involved before deciding.
Your preliminary visit allows you to see the setup in the office. Maybe they have therapy dogs. Maybe they have relaxing, neutral colors on the wall. Maybe they have televisions or tablets for you to distract yourself with. These are positive signals that the dentist understands patient anxiety.
Dentist interview — Your consultation is your chance to interview your potential new dentist. Use this time to familiarize yourself with services, location, and more.
Make sure to prepare questions and address any requirements you have before committing. That way, both of you know what to expect from your ongoing relationship.
Tailor your visits — Once you have a healthy relationship with your new provider, you can begin to tailor your dental experience so that it caters to your needs and expectations. Scared of dental tools? You’re more than welcome to request they keep them out of sight. Prefer to have music playing during your appointment? You can bring headphones or use some at the office, if available.
Insurance accepted — When you choose to see a Delta Dental in-network dentist, that dentist has already agreed to accept predetermined fees for services with Delta Dental. Our network of dentists also agrees to not send patients a bill when Delta Dental contracted fees are less than the dentist’s typical charges. That means that using a dentist that accepts your insurance will help you get the most out of your dental benefits.
Using an in-network dentist will provide you with a straightforward payment process. There’s no need to pay in full up front and wait to see what could be reimbursed. We pay your in-network dentist directly. Then, we’ll send you a notice, called an Explanation of Benefits (EOB). This explains the costs you’re responsible for after we compare your plan to the dentist’s charges. You’ll only ever pay the amount indicated in your EOB statement. Click here to learn more about the terms you might see on your Explanation of Benefits.
Using tools like these to better understand dentist practices and processes will help get you comfortable with visiting the dentist. Read more about ways to eliminate dental fear and anxiety on our blog.