FINDING THE RIGHT DENTIST
Today more than ever, the choice of selecting the right dentist is a critical decision that should be made with the utmost care. So how do you choose the right dentist? Over the past few years, there has been such a dramatic influx of dentists into the field, that it makes your decision to find the right one just that much more difficult . So when someone is looking to get a Hollywood smile or to simply maintain the smile they already have, what should they expect? Are all dentists the same?
When trying to decide on a dentist for you and your family, it's important to choose one with substantial experience in complex cases, extensive hands-on training, and a gentle approach that compliments your needs and wants is critical to achieving the most successful outcome - your gorgeous new smile! Educated and discerning people will realize that most dentistry, if done properly, is a complex and precise set of operative procedures that will dramatically affect their lives for years to come. Selecting a dentist can be a difficult and confusing process. In the end, it is a personal decision that each person must make for himself or herself. We can, however, offer some advice, which our clients have found helpful during the selection process. From discussions with our clients, we believe the most important of these tips include the following:
Take Your Time
Most dental procedures are elective procedures, not emergencies. Time spent learning about the dental procedures, different techniques and materials, and dentists you are considering will pay great dividends in terms of your understanding and emotional comfort later. If in doubt, see a couple different accredited dentists for a consultation. This will clarify in your own mind those personal characteristics that you would like your dentists to have. Our office is happy to provide second opinions, at little to no charge.
Post Graduate Dental Training
To perform certain general and cosmetic dental procedures at the highest level; technical skill, an artistic eye, and a rigorous program of post-graduate training in cosmetic dentistry is needed. It may surprise you to learn that the vast majority of dental schools don't teach any courses in cosmetic dentistry. For the few that do, they are usually limited to only a few introductory courses. Your mouth is not the place for on-the-job training. Therefore, it is crucial that the cosmetic dentist that you select continually completes series of hands-on courses in cosmetic dentistry. The field changes rapidly and keeps abreast of what was state-of-the-art five or ten years ago is not anymore. In depth training is essential to learn the latest techniques and materials to get optimal results. The significance lays not only in developing the dentist's clinical judgment and technical skill, but also in demonstrating his/her commitment to practicing cosmetic dentistry at the highest level of excellence.
Find a cosmetic dentist who is honest in his/her assessment of your needs and of their ability to meet your expectations. Be wary of the doctor minimizing your recovery period and telling you just how "easy and simple" everything is going to be.
A Caring Approach & Great Communication
Find a doctor with a good chair side manner who conveys to you that they care about you as a person as well as a client. Most general & cosmetic dentistry is a process not a single operation. Find someone with whom you can talk easily. It is just as important that he/she understands what you desire as that you understand what they are describing. To accomplish these goals, the first thing the cosmetic dentist should do is listen and make sure he or she understands all your concerns, needs and desires as they relate to your dental health and the look of your smile. Only then should they spend time diagnosing and consulting on the custom treatment plan, designed to fit within their budget.
A Sense of Perfectionism
Find a dentist who is accurate in his/her evaluation of your needs, precise in the execution of their operative plan, and meticulous in their craftsmanship. Although perfection is in the eye of the beholder, this doctor will do whatever it takes without cutting corners, not only to satisfy you, but also to meet their own personal standards of excellence. Make sure the cosmetic dentist addresses not just the teeth but also gums, lips, facial structure and your specific requests.
An Artistic Eye
While technical virtuosity is necessary to produce a great clinical result, it is not sufficient. Excellent dentistry demands a highly sophisticated artistic sense. In order to achieve an optimal aesthetic result, one must have a clear vision of what is artistically possible and appropriate. In this regard, it helps greatly if the cosmetic dentist works closely with the master ceramist, talking with them about the desired aesthetic results.
Extensive Smile Design Experience
Before you randomly select a dentist out of the phone book or rely on your long-time family dentist to give you the smile design of your dreams, think again. Great general & cosmetic dentistry is an art. The fact is, many dentists are generalists who simply have not performed cosmetic smile designs very many times or with a regularity that leads to mastery of this art. So, if you are considering veneers, for example, you should ask exactly how many veneers the dentist has placed.
Make Sure You Review Before and After Photos of Work Actually Performed by the Cosmetic Dentist
You'll want to look at before and after photos of cosmetic dentistry that has actually been performed by the dentist that you are considering. Beware that there are commercially available photos and albums that show the possibilities for cosmetic dentistry. But you want to confirm that you are seeing actual work of the dentist you are considering and make sure that the before photos you look at are also cases similar to yours.
Other Things You May Want to Consider
References from other patients, a tour of the office including sterilization areas, and asking about technology and materials used in the practice are all things you may want to look into.
Dr. Gulde and his team believe that we can offer you all of the above, and we invite you to see us for a consultation to see for yourself. Our philosophy is that dentistry must be performed with uncompromising attention to detail so that it is done correctly the first time. While we do accept many quests for corrective dentistry of prior procedures, our primary focus is to ensure that our patients have healthy, precisely executed dentistry that will last them a lifetime.
Of course, please don't hesitate to contact our office at (352)602-4235 if you need any additional assistance... We would love to hear from you and are happy to help in any way we can!