Fayetteville/Fort Bragg/ Sandhills NC

VOL8 ISS2 2018

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THE ORIGINAL RELOCATION GUIDE — FAYETTEVILLE | FORT BRAGG | SANDHILLS REGION VOLUME 8 — ISSUE 2 68 CHOOSING A DENTAL PROFESSIONAL There's so much on your 'to-do' list in mov- ing your family to a new place; choosing a new dentist may seem like something that can wait. However, it only takes one 'middle-of-the-night' toothache to totally rearrange your list of priorities. Not only can emergency dental care be a hassle but proper long-term care for your family's teeth can prevent a wide range of future health problems. Research studies have shown that there is a connection with what is going on in your mouth and what is going on in other areas of your body. That is why the choice of a dentist is so significant. Finding the right dentist can make all the difference in not only your oral health but in the stress of trying to maintain regular good oral hy- giene for your kids. As you get to know people in your new neighborhood, at your kids' school and other social situ- ations, don't hesitate to ask for recommendations about dentists in the area. No pun intended, but 'word of mouth"'is still a great place to start learning about services available to you in a new area. These individuals not only provide a wealth of personal expe- riences; but can give you insight into a dentist's standard of care and how he or she handles a practice. If you're still very new to the area or maybe trying to research from out of town or out of state more familiar websites such as www. yelp.com and www.angieslist.com can still give you re- viewers' looks at dentist practices in your area. Of course you'll need to find a dentist that will work with your family's healthcare plan and that's a major consideration to help narrow down your search signifi- cantly. Visit your insurance company's website for a listing of dentists in the prospective area that will accept your form of insurance. While these websites usually don't get into specifics they can give you a great starting point to find dentists in your geographic area that may meet your family's needs. If you don't have insurance, or if your insurance requires you to pay co-insurance, it's important to remember that not all dentists charge exactly the same prices. You can comparison shop for a dentist the same way you can with anything. You can call different dentists and ask for prices on various services. CHOOSING A DENTAL PROFESSIONAL BY STUART JAMES The receptionists in the offices are there to answer ques- tions, so don't be afraid to ask what you want to know. While considering cost is important, don't let it trump the skills, training and ability of the dentist. Once you've narrowed the field you'll want to setup some consultations. That's right — consultations, plural. You will probably want to interview more than one doc- tor and office. Sometimes you can learn a lot about your future dentist just by stopping by and simply sitting down for a conversation. Bring along a copy of your family's dental history. Also have a list of important questions such as what dental procedures are done in the office, as op- posed to those which may have to be outsourced to a different doc- tor. If you don't already know, now is also a good time to ask about your dentist's medical affiliations and whether or not he or she is a member of some of the professional dental organizations. Organizations make it a priority that their mem- bers attend regular meetings as well as to keep as up-to-date as possible on new developments and technolo- gies in the field. If the professional does belong to an organization it shows a progressive side and a desire to learn. During consultations you should also study your dentist's demeanor especially if you have kids; it may be advisable to find a dentist that has experience working with all age groups. A family-friendly dentist who can make a regular teeth-cleaning a pleasurable experience is a rare treat for parents. After all, your new dentist will most likely handle your family's dental needs for years to come, so knowing that you have a friendly, affable person to see every few months will make the experience much less stressful. Preventative care should be a top priority of any good dental office. The office should be clean and well organized. You should be able to review your medical record, includ- ing X-rays, at any time with the dentist or a member of the dental team. Last but certainly not least, make sure you are able to contact someone from the office AFTER HOURS in case of an emergency. Also make sure the practice location and hours are convenient to your home and work. Choos- ing the right dentist is a major decision for your family's overall well-being, but if you take your time and >>

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