September 28, 2020

7 Factors to Consider Before Choosing an Oral Surgeon

oral surgeon

Do you need to replace a lost tooth or have a dental implant placed? Maybe you’re ready to pull out those wisdom teeth. Though there are many reasons you might need to see an oral surgeon, who you see can make all the difference.

There are currently over 4,830 oral and maxillofacial surgeons in the country. How do you narrow down your options to find someone you can trust?

Here are seven factors to consider before choosing an oral surgeon in your area. With these tips, you can find someone worth trusting your smile with. Once you find the right professional, you can schedule an appointment to get the help you need.

Start researching by focusing on these seven factors today!

1. Education

First, you’ll want to find a professional with the proper education and training. Go through the oral surgeons on your list and make sure each graduated from an accredited dental school.

After that, look for surgeons with another four to six years of surgical and anesthesia training.

Which of the surgeons on your list prioritize continued education? Surgeons who keep learning never fall behind with the latest techniques. You don’t want to end up with a surgeon who uses outdated or even dangerous methods.

Most surgeons mention they incorporate the latest technologies and techniques throughout their offices. You can ask if their treatment options are up-to-date as well.

You can ask each surgeon on your list for proof of their board certification in oral and maxillofacial surgery, too.

Do any of the surgeons on your list have a dual degree in dentistry and medicine? Which spent a full year studying general surgery as part of their training?

Choosing an oral surgeon who took the time to receive additional training could work to your benefit. These surgeons understand complex procedures and techniques. If you only need a dental implant or tooth extraction, however, you might decide it’s not essential to your search.

2. Experience

It’s not enough to choose a surgeon with the right education. How they put their education to use matters too.

Look into each professionals’ oral surgery experience. How long have they worked as an oral surgeon? You might feel more comfortable with someone who has over 10 years of experience.

How many times have they performed the specific surgery you need? If they’ve never performed the procedure, keep searching.

Make sure to check the surgeon’s website for their Meet the Doctors or biography page. Reading more about their experience can give you peace of mind. If their website lacks this page, call the practice to learn more.

How is the doctor using their oral surgery experience to improve their field? Are they a member of any organizations?

For example, maybe they’re a member of the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. A surgeon with a professional membership has an opportunity to develop professionally. They also have access to a network of other oral surgeons across the country.

You can also learn more about their experience by looking for someone who has:

  • Published their research
  • Achieved diplomat or fellowship status
  • Won awards or accolades

Surgeons with these accomplishments are often dedicated to helping their field grow.

3. Services

About 3.5 million extraction surgeries are performed each year. That’s about 10 million individual wisdom teeth getting pulled out annually. If you don’t need your wisdom teeth extracted, think about the help you are looking for.

Common oral health issues that require oral surgery include:

  • Bone grafting
  • Corrective jaw surgery
  • Tooth extraction
  • Dental implants

Check the surgeon’s website to ensure they offer the services you need. Can you find someone who specializes in the right treatment?

Don’t forget to ask for proof of their work, too. Do they have any before and after photos you can look at? What about case studies you can review?

Reviewing proof of their work can help you confirm the quality of services they can offer.

4. Costs

During your search, don’t forget to ask about their practice’s options when it comes to accepting payments for treatments. Do they accept your medical or dental insurance?

You can either call the practice or check their website to check. If they’re not in-network with your insurance plan, you might want to keep looking.

Otherwise, ask about the practice’s financing options. Do they have any specials available?

5. Reputation

Many people start their search by asking their dentist for a professional recommendation. If your dentist recommends a specific surgeon, it’s likely they’re a trusted professional.

You can also learn more about a surgeon’s professional recommendation by asking for references and reviews. Learn from other patients who were once in your shoes. You can find patient reviews on the practice’s Google My Business or Better Business Bureau listing.

You might see one or two negative reviews. That’s normal.

Don’t let one bad review scare you off.

Try to read a few positive and negative reviews to develop a full picture of the oral surgeon’s reputation.

6. Convenience

Does the practice suit your location and schedule? You don’t want to drive 45 minutes out of your way, especially if there’s an emergency.

First, determine where the practice is located. Can you get there easily?

Make sure there’s enough parking nearby. Otherwise, you might have to walk half a mile to reach the offices.

Take a look at their hours, too. Do they offer appointments that suit your schedule? Do they only offer some treatments at certain days a week?

Is someone on-call for emergencies?

If their practice doesn’t suit your needs, keep searching.

7. Comfort

Once you’ve worked your way through this checklist, review your options. Which surgeon makes you feel comfortable? See if you can speak with a few on the phone or go in for a consultation.

Make sure the surgeon is kind and communicates well. Do they take the time to answer your questions?

Choose someone you feel comfortable with.

Say Aw and Pick a Practice: 7 Tips for Choosing the Best Oral Surgeon

Regardless of the oral health issues you’re experiencing, it helps to know you can turn to a professional. With these seven tips, you can find the one oral surgeon you need to fix the problem.

Start your search and find the best surgeon around with these tips today!

Looking for an experienced surgeon with the expertise and services you need? Request a consultation today for personalized care.