Always ask these 4 questions when choosing a new dentist

15 June 2022

Choosing a new dentist can be tricky, and if you have just moved to a new area this can be even more difficult. It can be easy to rely on recommendations from people you know, but this does not always give a clear indication of the standards of cleanliness or whether a dental practice is using the most up to date methods in dentistry. There are many factors to consider, from the dental practitioners’ accreditations and qualifications, to the services that you need, so let’s have a look at some helpful questions you can ask to help you decide which dental practice is the best for you, as well as some factors to bear in mind.

  1. What does the dental practice specialise in?

Some dentists will specialise in certain areas, such as teeth whitening, veneers, extractions, dental implants and so on, whereas some will offer an all-round approach. Due to the size of our team at Pateley Bridge Dental Practice, and the wide ranging key specialisms of our dentists, our proficiency at lies in general and maintenance, restoration, root canal treatment, children’s dentistry, fillings, crowns, bridges, dentures, teeth whitening, veneers, dental implants and Invisalign to name a few.

  1. Why should I trust your practice over others?

Recommendations are more easily found thanks to Google Reviews, Social Media reviews, and websites such as Trustpilot. Many websites can give the appearance of having top notch reviews, but excellent dentistry speaks for itself. Asking friends, family, people in your area can also be an effective way to see what others think. Currently we are rated 5 out of 5 stars on our Google reviews. Simply Google our practice!

You can also check whether a dental practice meets the standards of the General Dental Council, which can also advise if dentists have indemnity cover in the event of substandard treatment or negligence.

  1. What hygiene practices are in place?

Some key areas to look out for here include, does the premises appear clean and sanitary? Do you notice that equipment has been cleaned? Do dental staff wear PPE when administering treatment? Most importantly, can members of the dental team answer your questions in a meaningful way? If not, this can be a tell-tale sign that this dental practice is not for you. If you would like to check ahead of receiving treatment, you can always ask for a short tour of the practice, especially if you feel nervous or anxious regarding treatment.

  1. Do the opening hours and emergency cover suit my needs?

Naturally you need to ensure that the dental practice you choose is open in hours that is convenient for you. We stay open until 6:30pm on Wednesdays to ensure that people who cannot take time off work still get access to the dental service. Even more importantly, you need to know that in the event of a worst case scenario that you need emergency dental care, that your dentist practice provides this. This should be publicly available information on their respective websites, but if not you can always ask a receptionist or other dental care staff member. It is also important to know what their waiting time policy is, so you do not unnecessarily waste your time as we all lead busy lives.

Factors to consider

There are many things to take into consideration unique to you, but the above questions should be able to cover most concerns. Additionally, there are two other areas you will need to be aware of.

  1. You are not bound to a catchment area

Whilst it may be tempting to choose a dental practice local to you, this may not always be the best option. It’s always advisable to first consider what services you require, and match this to the dental practice that most suits your individual needs, rather than simply choosing the most geographically convenient.

  1. Do your research

There are many avenues to find out the reputation of a dental practice. Utilise the tools available online and ask around so that you can make the most informed decision.

Whilst of course, we here at Pateley Bridge Dental Practice are always happy to answer your questions and accommodate most requests with our professional expertise, not every dental practice will. We recommend doing your research, seeing if the practice has the capacity for treatments you have in mind, to the standards you wish. To find out more about our treatments, please click here.