Have you ever visited a new dentist and felt intimidated to ask questions?
After all, you’re “just” the patient and they’re the professional… right?
The notion that you shouldn’t (or can’t) ask any question you want to your dentist – or any other medical practitioner, for that matter – is absolutely absurd.
Consider this example: let’s say your car has a problem and you take it to an auto mechanic. Assuming you’ve got a decent, honest mechanic, they won’t have any problem answering your questions. They don’t expect you to know everything about auto repair – otherwise why would you need them?
Part of being a professional is showing your patients that you genuinely care about them, and part of genuinely caring is answering any questions they may have. This is why Dr. James Phelan welcomes and encourages his patients to ask whatever they like with total comfort and confidence. At Exquisite Smiles, there are no “stupid questions” and our patients will never feel intimidated or downplayed.
Let’s take a look at 7 important questions you should feel confident asking your new dentist. If you’re in the South Attleboro area, feel free to stop by and ask them to Dr. Phelan!
1. What areas of dentistry are your specialty?
Any good dentist should have an immediate answer to this question. They may specialize as a cosmetic dentist, in orthodontics, or general dentistry.
2. May I see your references?
Again, another easy one for any great dentist.
3. May I have “XYZ” in writing?
Whatever “XYZ” may be, your dentist should be willing to put it in writing for you – for example, their recommendations or other important information.
4. How are your instruments sterilized?
All right, so this is a bit of a “gotcha” question, but the answer should be swift and confident. If it isn’t, you might want to find a different dentist.
5. What can I expect during my first exam at your practice?
Knowing a little about standard procedures can make the answer to this question more illuminating. Generally, the first exam with a new dentist will include a review of your dental history, confirming any medications you may already be taking, and answering your questions in addition to the exam itself.
6. What payment options do I have?
Your new dentist should be able to describe to you exactly how you’ll be expected to pay before performing their services. You should also be able to easily learn if they accept your dental insurance.
7. Is there anything I should tell my general practitioner?
This is perhaps one of the most important questions that many dental patients don’t consider – your oral health is relevant to your overall health. Your dentist may have valuable information you should share with your family doctor, and in some cases may even interface with them personally.