Cosmetic Dentist Near Me
Many fields of dentistry require additional education and continued development; these fields are recognized by the American Dental Association as specializations. Cosmetic dentistry is not one of these recognized specializations, though many cosmetic dentists do receive additional education and gain expertise through years of experience. But how do you know which cosmetic dentist you can trust? If you’re looking for a cosmetic dentist near where you live, there are a few ways you can determine whether to pursue treatment with a specific dentist. Do a little research, and if the information you want isn’t online, don’t be afraid to call the dentist’s office to ask your questions directly.
Look for a dentist who’s well trained in cosmetic dentistry procedures and has completed postgraduate, continuing-education coursework in cosmetic procedures. If your prospective cosmetic dentist doesn't have these educational credentials posted on their website, don’t be afraid to ask for details about their continued education and expertise, especially in the procedure or procedures you’re considering. Cosmetic dentists who are members of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry have consistent access to professional development and continuing education opportunities; while membership does not guarantee that the member dentist has taken advantage of these opportunities, it does demonstrate an investment in the reputation of cosmetic dentistry and is a factor worth weighing.
Experienced, reputable cosmetic dentists usually have an album in their office or online – or both – that displays before-and-after photographs of their patients’ cosmetic work. Ask the dentist to show you cases that are similar to yours, and, if you have questions for the patient, ask the dentist if they offer contact information for any referral patients. Some cosmetic dentists include digital imaging or other mock-ups as part of their consultation and allow patients to see their intended smile before they commit to treatment; if this is important to you, ask if it’s an option. Advanced dental technologies can improve the outcomes of some cosmetic dentistry procedures, and many cosmetic dentistry practices use dental lasers, intraoral cameras, and digital devices to ensure precision and perfection. If you have very specific needs, you may want to work with a dentist who is adept at these technologies. You may also want to ask prospective dentists what kind of sedation or anesthesia might be available for your procedure, if you’re planning a more-intensive treatment or even if you’re just really anxious about visiting the dentist.
It’s not uncommon to feel apprehensive about medical and dental visits, but the dentist you choose should have an office that is friendly and comfortable and tries to soften that apprehension wherever they can. Cosmetic dentists and their staff should be open to questions and provide thorough, understandable answers and quality referrals when the question is outside their scope. Your cosmetic dentist should have an office that is located a convenient distance from where you live and work, and their schedule should also suit your needs. Many cosmetic dentistry procedures require multiple treatments over several office visits, so these conveniences can be important to the overall satisfaction with the procedure. Because many cosmetic dentistry treatments are elective and therefore excluded from most dental insurance policies, you may want to choose a cosmetic dentist who’s partnered with a third-party financing service or who offers in-office payment plans. In the long run, this is preferable to choosing an inexpensive, inexperienced dentist who does sub-par work.