Your oral health and the oral health of your family depends on you making regular visits to the dentist. However, if you are one of those people who fear dental visits, it is important to find a dentist with whom you feel comfortable. Even if you have no dental phobias, you will still want to find the most competent dental professional available in your area.

Choosing The Right Dentist For Your Family

Resources For Finding Local Dentists

As a Canadian, one of the most important dental resources you have is the website of the Canadian Dental Association (CDA). The CDA is the country’s main organization for dentists. According to the CDA, there were almost 20,000 licensed dentists practicing in the country in January 2010; the website will be able to put you in touch with at least one of them in your area. Depending on your needs, you may want to find out if a particular dental professional has training in any subspecialties such as cosmetic dentistry or dental surgery. 89 percent of Canadian dentists are general practitioners, but 11 percent have specialized areas of practice. There are other Canadian dental organizations that will have more information on dental specialists like the Toronto Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry and the Societe dentaire de Montreal.

Factors to Consider Before Making an Appointment

It is important to not entrust your smile (or that of your child) to a dentist before knowing a few things about them first. You should visit their practice and observe; look for things like:

  • How the staff treats patients; they should be friendly and helpful.
  • The cleanliness of the practice (this is important for the waiting area as well as the examination room).
  • If there are any children present. If you are looking for a dentist specifically for your children, you will want one with pediatric experience.
  • Their office hours; the CDA says that dentists with more than 20 years of experience spend only about 31 hours of the week in their practice.

The type of technology a dentist uses is also a good indicator of the quality of their services. If they use state of the art methods and equipment, then it is likely that they have made an effort to keep up with advances in dentistry and have attended professional seminars and/or training courses to maintain their skills. Dentists who are serious about their skills are more likely to provide your family with a positive experience. It is important that you find out about the equipment that your dentist uses and ask about their skills and recent education as well.

Equipped for a Comfortable Experience

Patient comfort is one of the most important elements of a dental visit. Dentists should take steps to alleviate the anxieties that many individuals (especially children) may have about visiting their practice. Having TV, toys or music available can do a lot to ease the fear for many people. Ergonomic comfort is another area that may be of concern to dental patients. Sitting in a chair for a considerable length of time with your mouth open is not most people’s idea of a good time. It is important for a dentist to ensure that the patient is physically comfortable for the duration of their procedure.

Your relationship with your dentist will be a long-term one, therefore you should invest some time into finding the one that is right for you before an emergency comes along.

Author’s Bio: The author, Mariah Hart, enjoys writing about Health and sharing these insights online. For more references, you may be interested in Your Smile Dental Care.