Did you know that six in 10 Americans are afraid to visit the dentist?
For most of us, sitting in a dentist’s chair is never a reason to celebrate. Even if you absolutely love your dentist.
It’s even worse if you don’t.
But because going to the dentist is almost never fun, it can be tough to recognize when you’ve settled for a less than perfect dentist.
So we’ll take a look at the warning signs of a bad dentist.
1. Kitschy Sales Gimmicks
If you’re currently searching for a new dentist, don’t get taken by offers for free cleanings, whitening packages, or other “deals.”
This is typically a tactic to get new patients into the office so the dentist can tell you that you need expensive treatments.
Another caveat? Be wary of dentists who also sell vitamins, supplements or other products. They’re typically more interested in lining their pockets than they are in caring for their patients.
2. Lack of Dental Records
A good dentist relies on dental records. It gives him or her the information needed to determine your past conditions as well as the next steps in treatment.
If you recently made an appointment with a new dentist and they didn’t request your dental records, you may want to call and cancel that appointment. The lack of concern is certainly a red flag.
3. Wanting X-rays Too Frequently
Does your current dentist pull out the lead apron and outfit you for a full set of dental x-rays every time you show up to the office?
That should not happen.
A full set of x-rays should be taken no more than every two years. And if your dentist is saying he or she can’t do any work without them, you’re getting the song and dance.
X-rays are a simple way for dental offices to make some extra cash while giving you additional radiation you really don’t need. So steer clear.
4. The Sudden Need for Extensive Work
Dentists who are in the game mostly – if not purely – for the money are likely to tell you that you need all sorts of costly procedures.
If you have little to no history of dental problems, this is a warning sign.
But it’s tricky with dentists because you don’t really know if they’re being honest. It’s not like when you hire painting or power washing contractors, for instance, and you can see clearly what needs to be done.
So check the internet to find out about the dentist’s reputation. If other patients are getting swindled out of their money with costly procedures, then you know you’ve found a bad apple.
5. Unexplained Expenses on Your Bill
You should always request your bill before you leave the office.
And if something looks strange, then ask for a breakdown of the bill.
Medical billing can be immensely confusing and some crooked dentists rely on this. They’ll pad the bill with phantom treatments in hopes that you don’t bother to question them.
That’s a dentist you definitely don’t need.
Watch for Warning Signs of a Bad Dentist
You would think that you could trust someone who’s chosen to work in the medical field.
But the above warning signs of a bad dentist prove that that just isn’t the case. So stay vigilant.
And for more tips and advice on finding the ideal dentist in your neighborhood, keep checking back with our blog.