Questions to Ask Your Family Dentist

UPDATED 2/17/21

dental care for children

Maintaining good oral hygiene is important for overall health and self esteem. A recent study showed that 74% of adults in the United States felt an unattractive smile could hurt their chance for career success, while 96% of people believe a great smile makes a person more attractive to the opposite sex.

Whether you are switching to another family dentist office or if you are new to how things work at the dentist, always be sure to ask plenty of questions — they can end up making your visit a lot more pleasant and you may end up saving more time, money, and see an improvement in your oral health.

Below are a list of important questions to ask when choosing a family dentist:

  1. How much do you charge for general dentistry services and cavity fillings? Tooth decay is four times more common than asthma among those aged 14 to 17 years old, so you definitely want to check how much a cavity filling costs if you have children.
  2. If you have a health insurance plan, will they participate in it? Sometimes dental insurance is not covered in health insurance plans. The dentist office should be able to tell you what plans they participate in.
  3. When and how are you expected to pay for your appointments? Have them walk you through the fees, payment methods, and payment schedules that you can participate in. Most offices will be happy to help find a payment plan that works best for you.
  4. What types of dental procedures can their dentist office perform? Sometimes dental offices may be behind the times and not offer state-of-the-art procedures, like an all on 4 procedure. However, with 28% of people aged 35 to 44 years old suffering from untreated tooth decay, you can expect most offices will perform a dental implants procedure.
  5. How does the office handle emergencies outside of office hours? Sometimes dental accidents happen; people may chip a tooth and it needs to be attended to as soon as possible. Most offices will have someone on call who can direct you on what to do.

If you plan on taking your child to the family dentist, here are some questions you should consider asking:

  1. How much is teeth whitening? This procedure is very popular among teens and college-aged students, so if you have a child within that age range, they may be asking for a teeth whitening procedure. Whitening restores the natural tooth color, while bleaching methods whiten beyond the natural color.
  2. If your child has sensitivity or pain in their teeth or often suffers from bleeding gums, ask if the office provides sedation dentistry. Sedation dentistry can be in the form of general anesthesia or a gas that calms people during dental cleanings and other procedures.
  3. Does my mouth, or my child’s mouth look healthy? What, if anything, can we improve upon when it comes to maintaining good oral hygiene at home?
  4. What dental treatments are absolutely necessary for my child and I at the office? Are there any benefits to certain cosmetic procedures?

Of course, always ask about proper brushing and flossing technique; all dentists will be happy to share their tips and tricks.

When you have a family, it is convenient for you to find a family dental practice that will see all of you when it’s time for dentist appointments. The oral family dental care that you get from a family practice includes much-needed dental care for children as well as adults of various ages and with various dental problems. A family dental practice is also made to be friendly for people of all ages and may have special aspects that are only for children such as toys and books. This can help to keep your children occupied and less nervous before their appointments.

To make things even more convenient, most parents look for family dental locations that are not too far from their houses. Many children don’t do well on long car rides, and many parents don’t have the time for errands that take all day. A family specialty dentistry practice can usually make multiple appointments for you at the time or at staggered times so that you can get everyone seen in one stretch of time. This gets a lot of errands out of your way for the next few months and makes it easier to get multiple people to their appointments.

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