Does your smile need a makeover? Perhaps your teeth are discolored, cracked, crooked, overcrowded or unevenly spaced. Maybe you’ve been closing your mouth when smiling or laughing because you’re embarrassed by your teeth. If so, it’s time to visit a cosmetic dentist. How do you go about finding one who’s right for you? At Precision Dentistry of Columbia, MD, we believe the following steps will help you make this important decision.
If you have friends or relatives who have had cosmetic dental work in the past, talk to them to find out if they recommend their dentists and why. Chances are, they won’t mince words. Even if they weren’t particularly pleased with their dentists, they’ve been through the treatments you’re considering and will be able to steer you in the right direction.
Do some online research.
Once you have your referrals, go online and do some research. Visit the websites of the dentists you’ve been referred to and try to get the feel of what they have to offer, their qualifications, their treatment philosophies, and how they operate.
Be sure to look at online reviews of their services on sites like Yelp, Google+ Local, YP.com, and Dr. Oogle. While the reviews on these sites may not always be completely objective, it’s still helpful to look at them and read about other people’s experiences. If there are an overwhelming number of good (or bad) reviews, that may tell you something.
Also, check out the discussion forums and community message boards on realself.com. You will be able to communicate with dental professionals and actual patients, who may have some helpful suggestions regarding what qualities to look for when choosing a cosmetic dentist. This site may even have some published reviews of the dentists you’re considering.
Schedule a complimentary consultation.
A reputable cosmetic dentist will usually offer complimentary consultations. Take advantage of this. After you’ve done your preliminary research, call the one you’re most interested in (or even several that stand out) and schedule a complimentary consultation. This will give you the opportunity to ask the dentist questions and in effect, “interview” him or her. You will learn about the dentist’s expertise, fees, treatment philosophies, and communication skills—all of which are important when selecting a dentist.
Some questions you might want to ask are:
- Am I a good candidate for the procedure I’m interested in?
- What specific technique will be used?
- What kind of results should I expect?
- Have your patients experienced any complications with this procedure?
- What are my options if I am unhappy with the outcome of the treatment?
- Do you do revisions, and if so, at what cost?
The dentist’s answers to your question will obviously help you make your decision. But it’s not just the literal answers that tell you something; how the information is communicated is equally important. Ideally, the dentist you choose should answer questions thoroughly, and be willing to give you the time you need. If the dentist or his staff seem unresponsive, hurried or indifferent, those are all red flags indicating that this is probably not the practice for you.
Review before-and-after photos.
During your initial consultation, ask to see “before-and-after” photos of patients who have undergone cosmetic procedures at the practice. Most cosmetic dentists are proud of what they do and document the work they’ve done. Oftentimes these photos can be viewed on the dental practice’s website or in an actual photo album at the dental office. This can be an excellent indicator of the type of results you can expect.
Looking for a cosmetic dentist in the Baltimore area?
If you live in the Baltimore metro area, we hope you’ll consider Precision Dentistry for your cosmetic dentistry needs. We have the skills, tools, and experience to provide you with the smile you’ve been dreaming of. To schedule your complimentary consultation with cosmetic dentist Dr. Javod Gol, call us today at (410) 884-0262, or fill out our online contact form. We’ll help you see what your best options are, so you can not only have a beautiful smile but good oral health too.