Finding dental services that suit your schedule, lifestyle and oral health needs can be tricky. Choosing the right dentist for yourself and your family is not only a case of finding the closest dental practice to your home, but also making sure the dentist has the right qualifications and experience to meet all your needs. Work through the following steps to find out whether a dental practice is right for you.
1. Consider Whether You Want NHS or Private Dental Care
Some UK dentists offer dental services via the NHS, whereas others only offer private dental services. NHS dentistry fees are capped, which means you will pay a lot less if you need to have a lot of dental work done. However, not all dental services are available via the NHS. You might also face a longer wait for an NHS appointment than a private one.
2. Check the Dentist's Registration
The most important thing to do before you visit any UK dentist is to check that they are registered with the General Dental Council. The GDC has a searchable online database of dentists, which allows you to see which dentists are qualified to offer certain dental services. This is extremely useful if you need a dentist with particular expertise.
3. Read Reports on the Dental Practice
It pays to do some research into the reputation of a dental practice before you sign up. You can read reports by the Care Quality Commission to discover what standard of care a particular dental practice offers. You can also read online reviews by other patients on Google Places or the NHS website.
4. Find a Dentist That Suits Your Lifestyle
The dental practice closest to your home is not always the most convenient choice, particularly if you work standard business hours. You might find it easier to visit a dentist close to your workplace during your lunch break. Be sure to check the opening hours of any dental practice where you are considering registering as a patient to see how they match up with your routine.
5. Find a Dentist That Suits Your Family
Many parents find it convenient to register the whole family with the same dentist. If you decide to take this approach, you need to find a dentist who has experience of providing dental services to children. A dentist who is willing to take the time to put your kids at ease can help to reduce the risk of them developing dental phobias.