When in search of a competent cosmetic dentist, a few factors must be considered. The choice can be confusing because of the sheer number of procedures available today, the fast-growing number of dentists that offer cosmetic surgery, and the possibility of requiring inter-disciplinary care before undergoing a cosmetic dentistry procedure.
You can ask your general dentist for a referral. If you religiously visit his clinic for regular checkups, he should have a good idea on your current dental condition, and may be able to refer you to a cosmetic dentist if you need to see one.
Your local dentist will refer you to the proper dental specialist if he thinks you need to be evaluated further before receiving cosmetic treatment. This is because the current condition of your gums, teeth, occlusion, and bone structure has a bearing on the success of the cosmetic dental procedure.
If you have friends and relatives who may have benefitted from a smile-makeover in the past, you can request them to refer you to the cosmetic dentist who worked on them. Your local dental school may also be able to help. Contact their cosmetic dentistry department, and ask for local dentists they can recommend.
Narrowing Your Choices Down
Before you set up an appointment with prospective dentists, do your homework and research on their experience and specific field of expertise. Can they do everything on their own, or will they refer you to another specialist if a treatment that is outside their specialization is required. It is also important to make sure that the dentist is an American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry accredited member, as this is an indication that the dentist has undergone the required training, and adheres to the set ethical standards.
Other factors you need to consider include the length of time the dentist has been in practice, the extent of the services he offers, and the technology and treatment methods he uses. Ask to see some before and after images of his work on past patients, and see if the results are satisfactory to you. Find out if he explains his diagnosis and proposed plans of action on patients clearly. If possible, ask what he recommends for your particular condition, how long the treatment will take, how much it will cost, and what financing options are acceptable.
Cosmetic dentistry procedures are not necessarily cheap, and may take some time to complete. It may even be done in various stages that will require frequent visits to the clinic. Thus, it is important to find a qualified cosmetic dentist who can effectively fix your oral problem, and at a cost you can afford. The benefits you stand to gain, however, are priceless.