How to Choose a Dentist
Everyone wants their smile to last a lifetime, but how do you find the right dentist to look after those pearly whites? The tips below will help you find a dentist that’s right for you.
Do your research
Try not to pick a dentist randomly. Seek out referrals and recommendations. Visit dentist websites. You’re looking for someone with experience, proper qualifications and a great reputation.
Visit the surgery
Is it clean and well run? Is the equipment modern or antiquated? Is the dentist friendly, does he explain things well? A good dentist will take you through any proposed treatment step by step.
Ask about patient comforts
Can you watch TV or a video during treatment? Does the dentist use pre-medication or sedation to relax nervous patients?
There are different types of dentist
Make sure the one you choose is suitably qualified. Are you simply after general dentistry, or do you need specialist dental treatment?
Be clear about the result you want
There are sometimes a number of different treatments available and it’s important to spend time learning about the different procedures. Discuss the possible options with your dentist.
Discuss fees before treatment begins
Once you know what you need, consider the cost of your dental treatment. It is often hard to compare different dentist’s prices as there are many ways to do a similar treatment. Often seeing a specialist is not much more than seeing a general dentist, especially when you consider the extra training they have undergone and the unique treatment they can offer.
Consider a second opinion
If extensive work has been recommended it may be worthwhile checking the assessment with another dentist.
Is the surgery in a convenient location?
Is it easy to get to from your home or your children’s school? This can be an important consideration if treatment requires multiple visits.
Is there plenty of free off street parking?
There is nothing more frustrating that driving around trying to find a car park. A centrally located practice with off street parking takes some of the stress out of getting to a dental appointment on time.
Is an emergency out-of-hours service available?
Teeth don’t always fit in with the nine to five working day. You need to know what your options are for those late-night dental calamities.
Finding the right dentist will help ensure you receive modern, qualified and fairly-priced dental care that will keep you smiling for years to come.
Andrew Newsom’s Practice
Specialist Dentist | Prosthodontist Andrew Newsom can be found in central Tauranga. Andrew offers general and advanced dental treatment options, with the ultimate goal of being able to deliver dental excellence through uncompromising patient care.
The latest technological advances are available to help you achieve a beautiful healthy smile, with options ranging from simple preventive measures to more specialised smile make-over cosmetic treatments. Services include implant tooth replacement, tooth whitening, crowns, bridges, IV sedation and NZ trained Dental Hygienists.
Dr Newsom receives referrals from all over New Zealand and welcomes new patients who seem the very best dental care. The practice is located in a beautifully renovated villa in central Tauranga. Ample off street parking makes visiting the practice stress free and the beautiful surrounding and home comforts you will find there makes it feel as though you are not in a dental practice at all.
Why should you visit a prosthodontist?
Prosthodontics is the dental specialty which is dedicated to the task of “tooth replacement” and “oral reconstruction”. To be registered as a Prosthodontist you are required to have undergone extensive formal postgraduate training to provide you with the necessary skills and knowledge to restore function and appearance to a patient’s entire dentition, as well as individual teeth. Because of this specialist training, Prosthodontists tend to work closely with other registered dental specialist groups (Endodontists, Periodontists, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons etc) to ensure that a patient’s comprehensive dental needs are treated to the highest possible standard and in the most professional manner possible.
Generally Prosthodontists treat the more difficult or complex problems that require oral reconstruction and/or tooth replacement. If you have been referred to a Prosthodontist, your general dentist may have identified that you require specialist care and by referring you they have placed your wellbeing first and want the best for you.
Identifying the nature of a problem is the usual starting point when developing a comprehensive treatment plan. At your first visit to a Prosthodontist you will be asked about your main concerns and relevant background information will be gathered. There may be questions about your previous dental experiences, medical health and lifestyle. Some may seem unrelated to dental problems but could provide important clues to underlying causes of your dental problems and assist in arriving at a proper diagnosis. As well as performing a thorough clinical examination, x-rays, impressions for study models, records of how your upper and power teeth fit together, and photographs of your teeth may be taken. All this helps the Prosthodontist put together an accurate and complete picture of your mouth and treatment needs.
Once the gathered records and information have been assessed, you will be presented with a formal treatment proposal and a comprehensive outline of any proposed treatment and the fees associated with that treatment.
Throughout treatment your dentist will be informed of your progress and at the conclusion of any treatment you will usually return to your general dentist for ongoing routine care.
What is the difference between a Prosthodontist and a Cosmetic Dentist?
The difference between the two groups essentially lies in the training and qualifications required to become a Prosthodontist and the range of treatment a Prosthodontist can provide. While Prosthodontics is recognised as a specialty by the Dental Council of New Zealand, a Cosmetic Dentist is not.
In New Zealand, Prosthodontists are general dentists who have undergone an internationally recognized and formally structured university training program to give them the extra skills and knowledge required to plan and manage dental problems. One can only become a Prosthodontist after several years (currently 3) of strictly monitored, full time theoretical and practical training at a University. This extra training equips them to perform all aspects of reconstructive dentistry; from improving smiles and appearance, to rebuilding broken down dentitions, and restoring patients with no teeth to dental function. This advanced training teaches them to be highly competent in the use a variety of clinical techniques including; porcelain veneers, crowns and bridges, removable partial and full dentures and reconstruction using dental implants.
The aim of treatment is to ensure that the patient is provided with a superior long-term result rather than a “quick fix” solution, which might break down relatively early or even damage previously healthy teeth and gums.
In contrast, a Cosmetic Dentist usually has no extra formal qualifications than your current general dentist, although it is assumed that dentists who call themselves Cosmetic Dentists will have undertaken some limited additional courses in cosmetic reconstruction or have a special interest in that field of dentistry. Currently a Cosmetic Dentist is not required to have any formal additional qualifications, nor will they usually have been required to have their relevant knowledge in that area tested or have undergone any professional recognized review process. Cosmetic dentistry is not recognized by the New Zealand Dental Council as a separate specialist group.