Taking care of your teeth and keeping your mouth healthy is important for a number of reasons.
Teeth that aren’t cared for properly can be vulnerable to gum disease and tooth decay, which may ultimately result in tooth loss.
Besides from affecting the way that you look, tooth loss can have far-reaching implications for your bite – which can cause issues with speech, eating, your facial structure, and your overall health.
If tooth decay is left untreated, the underlying cause of it could spiral out of control, potentially leading to problems like arthritis, diabetes, heart disease or oral cancer. There is so much more to keeping your mouth healthy than just for cosmetic purposes. It can keep you and your body healthy too!
While dental care should start at home with brushing and flossing, regular visits to the dentist are an equally important element when it comes to looking after your teeth.
The professionals will be able to identify an issue early on so that you have the best chance of not only saving your teeth, but also of getting the medical care you may need to treat any underlying conditions.
It is advisable to visit the dentist every six months, but unfortunately many patients fall short on this as they associate it with an unpleasant experience.
This is why it is so important to find a dentist that you feel comfortable with. So, what should you look for in a good dental clinic?
Location and hours
Some of the key practicalities you’ll need to take into consideration are the location of the clinic and its opening hours. It must be somewhere that is able to fit in with your daily life, including work commitments and child care.
By selecting somewhere that is close to your home or work, you are far more likely to keep up with your appointments.
Whether you are looking for a dental clinic in Sydney, London, Paris or wherever you may be, then there are professional services available with practices in convenient locations across each city.
Some smaller villages and towns may have limited choices so you may have to travel further if you are not happy with the practice that is local to you. It’s all about finding a dentist that is convenient for you, but also feels right.
Qualifications and licensing
It is essential that you opt for a clinic whose dentists have the highest professional qualifications to ensure they are able to carry out any dental work to the best standard.
You can use resources such as the Australian Dental Association in Australia or the General Dental Council in the UK to find out more about dental practices near you and to confirm qualifications/registrations.
Cost will be another key consideration when choosing a dental clinic, but this should be carefully weighed against the quality of care that they provide.
If you wish to get your dental care on your health insurance, you will need to check whether they will accept the clinic in question. You may also want to consider the payment options they accept, such as payment plans and credit cards.
The NHS is the most affordable option in the UK, but that doesn’t always mean it’s the right option for you. I have recently changed to a private cosmetic dentist for some false teeth as I was unhappy with the standard of the teeth I received on the NHS.
The difference between the care I receive at the private dentist and how involved I am in all decisions compared to the NHS dentist is like night and day.
Obviously the cost is around 10 times more at the private dentist, but to me it’s worth it.
Many dentists also offer payment plans, so if you need some serious work undertaken then it’s worth asking about finance options, especially if they are 0% and can help spread the cost in an affordable manner.
If you’re going down the insurance route then check what partnerships or recommendations the dentist themselves can offer. You may also be able to find your own insurance on a website like One Sure Insurance.
As already touched upon, comfort is a key concern when it comes to selecting a dental clinic that works for you.
Be sure to visit the clinic and meet the dentist before signing up to ensure that it is an environment you feel relaxed in.
If you don’t feel comfortable then change your dentist. If you are happy then you are more likely to maintain regular appointments.
It is important to find out what your clinic’s policies are for emergency services – do they offer treatments outside of office hours where they are absolutely necessary?
Ideally, you should be able to contact your dentist or an appropriate substitute at any time, rather than resorting to going to the emergency room.
By taking each of these points into full consideration before selecting your dental clinic, you can be sure to find a practice that works for you.
It’s vital to keep on top of the health of your mouth and to attend regular appointments.
Not only will this keep your teeth looking great, but it will also help to highlight and prevent any problems that could later lead to a problem elsewhere in your body and stop you from being as healthy as you are.
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