Dentists are medical professionals who have trained for several years to provide patients with comprehensive oral healthcare. Some dentists even spend extra years on continuous learning to become specialists in their chosen field. This makes them more adept and knowledgeable than a general dentist.
With their education, experience, and skill, we trust dentists to recommend the most effective treatment plan to achieve healthy and beautiful smiles. However, there are certain times when it is normal to second-guess your dentist. Whether it is about the treatment, diagnosis, or costs, it is fairly common to think twice about your dentist.
As a patient, how do you know if you can trust your dentist and when is it good to seek another opinion for your oral health?
When To Consider a Second Opinion
If you have recently visited your dentist for a certain oral health problem and are left with a long list of questions or concerns, this can be the beginning of your doubt with your dentist. There are several reasons why this can happen.
Some possible reasons why a second opinion should be considered are:
- There is an initial diagnosis of a significant health issue
Significant dental health concerns such as oral cancers or advanced periodontal disease sound scary if you are initially diagnosed with it. You can ease your mind with a second or even third assessment and diagnosis just to be sure of your case.
- A previous dental work was completed but the issue is still present
If you go to your dentist to address a sensitive tooth and you leave the clinic with the same concern, it is good to seek another dentist’s help to find out why. You may have an underlying concern or an overlooked dental issue that a different dentist can pinpoint.
- You are unsure if the recommended treatment is necessary
After a dental examination, a personalized treatment plan is created for you to help you with your oral health needs. If there are any listed treatments you find unnecessary, getting another dentist’s advice is recommended. This will help you learn about what you need moving forward.
- There is concern about the estimated costs of the treatment
Some dental clinics that offer advanced treatments may have higher costs compared to general dental clinics and practitioners. If you find that the fees do not match your needs, perhaps you can check with your insurance policy to find a dentist that will cover some or most of the costs.
- You are unsure of the qualifications of your dentist for your dental needs
Not all dentists are the same. Some have specialized studies that make them experts in their chosen dental field. If you are looking to get more advanced and complex dental work done, it is recommended to get a specialist’s opinion to learn more information about your case.
- You are unhappy with your current dentist
Lastly, if good rapport is not established and at some point, you feel queasy or hesitant with your current dentist, do not be afraid to go to another dentist whom you can better trust with your smile.
Benefits of Seeking a Second Opinion
Every patient has the right to obtain a second opinion. After all, not all dentists have received the same education. Also, not all dental clinics can offer specialist treatments or provide dental treatments at a cost that is most suitable to you. Because of this, it is perfectly reasonable and acceptable for you to seek out another opinion regarding potential dental work.
Comfort is the main benefit of seeking a second opinion. The more you seek a dentist or dental clinic that best suits your needs and addresses your concerns, the more comfortable you are to proceed with treatment. This helps with the overall outlook of the procedure. You no longer feel sketchy about getting the work done. And once you do proceed, you will receive proper dental care to achieve and maintain a healthy smile.
How to Approach Seeking a Second Opinion
When you have decided you want a second opinion for your dental work, choosing where to find it is the next step. Some reliable sources to help you with this are:
A good dentist will not get offended that you want to seek another colleague’s opinion. In fact, your best source to find another dentist for a second opinion is your dentist. Ask for a referral from them if they know a specialist for the procedure you want to get done or ask them if they know anyone who can offer treatments at a cost that best suits you. They will likely be more than happy to recommend someone.
Friends and family
Asking the people you trust is also a good approach to finding a dentist. They may already have their own dentist who they can refer to you. If one of your friends or family has already done the specific dental work you are concerned about, going to their dentist is a good choice.
Some organizations have a featured online list of dental specialists. This can come in handy if you need more advanced dental work done and you want to inquire with someone who has the qualifications for it.
If you have an insurance policy, you can ask your insurer if they have a recommendation list. Fortunately, many plans come with consultation coverage for second opinions, but you should always check your policy to be sure.
Lastly, schools for dentistry can also provide helpful information on locating a dentist for a second opinion.
Second Opinion From Dentist — Conclusion
When it comes to your oral health, trust your gut. The bottom line is that getting a second opinion from another dentist is not a bad thing nor is it illegal. In fact, the dental community encourages you to do so.
As healthcare professionals, we aim to provide you with suitable treatment that you can be happy and comfortable with. So, if at any point of the consultation or treatment, you find that you need another dentist’s opinion or advice, communicate with your dental team so they can assure you of your concerns.
As a value-driven practice, Midpark Dental will always put your feelings and comfort first. If you’re looking for someone to provide you with a valuable second opinion on your dental needs, call us today and book an appointment with us!