Tag Archives: Finding a great cosmetic dentist

How Do I Find the Best Dentist?

I’ve recently moved and need to find a new dentist. I’ve been to the same one most of my adult life so it feels weird switching. How do I find the best one available?

Burt

Dear Burt,

Woman giving thumbs up in a dental chair
The Best Dentists Leave Us with Smiles

Wouldn’t it be great if there was some independent, objective measurement to tell us who the best dentists were? Unfortunately, especially when it comes to general dental care, there isn’t. That doesn’t mean I can’t give you some guidelines to help you find the best dentist for your particular needs.

The first thing to ask yourself is what type of services do you need? Are you strictly and nuts and bolts guy who just wants his teeth cleaned and maintained as necessary? Or maybe you also want some cosmetic work done? Once that’s decided, it gets a little easier.

Finding the Best General Dentist

For the basics, I’d simply do an internet search for dentists in your area. Then I’d take two additional steps.

  • Check their reviews.

You’ll want a dentist people enjoy seeing. One who makes them feel like family instead of just someone they need to get in and out of the dental chair. Reviews are generally written by those who are thrilled with the service they’ve received or hated it. Either one should give you the information you need.

  • Check their passion

Each state has a requirement for how many continuing education hours a dentist has to do to keep their license. You want a dentist who not only keeps up with the developments in his field but has a passion for it. Make sure they go above and beyond what is required. They shouldn’t be offended to answer a question on how many continuing hours they do.

Finding the Best Cosmetic Dentist

It’s a little easier to find the best cosmetic dentist. Because there isn’t a cosmetic dentistry specialty, there used to be no way for patients to know who would give them a gorgeous smile makeover with porcelain veneers and who would give them a cosmetic horror story.

Fortunately, the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry stepped in and created an accreditation program. This tests dentist both with written and oral exams gauging their technical knowledge. Then, it requires them to provide visual evidence of a large number of cosmetic procedures they’ve done to ensure they not only have technical skill but artistry as well.

If a dentist is AACD accredited, that means you will get a stunning smile. In fact, most of them have a beautiful smile guarantee.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Randall Burba.

I’m Terrified of Becoming A Horror Story

I had a friend get a horrible…and I mean horrible smile makeover. She spent thousands of dollars and her orignal smile, which did need lots of work, was better than what this quack gave her.  Believe it or not, I’m now considering getting my own smile makeover. That being said, I don’t want to end up with a disaster. Is there a way to separate the pretenders from the real deal?

Jamie W. – New York

Jamie,

That’s probably one of the most important questions you can ask before embarking on your own smile makeover (as well as your hard earned money). You want to find the best dentist possible, especially since cosmetic dentistry isn’t a recognized specialty. Any general dentist can learn a procedure or two (regardless of their skill level) and call themselves a cosmetic dentist.

In fact, the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry  (AACD) was started in part to help potential cosmetic dentistry patients with just that question.

Their goal was to create an accreditation process, so that patients could locate highly skilled cosmetic dentists.

If I were in your position, I would go to a dentist who is accredited with the AACD.  Accreditation is different than membership.  You can just join to be a member. To become accredited, you must demostrate both technical skill and artistic beauty in your work. It’s a long process and very few dentists reach that level, but it will be worth worth your time and money to seek one out.

You’ll end up with a stunningly gorgeous smile you can’t help but show off.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Randall Burba.