How to find a dentist during COVID-19

Sometimes, you might need a new dentist. But with the current pandemic, you might be tempted to postpone this search. Or worse, postpone dental visits. As we learned more about the current pandemic, dental offices were able to safely start opening. So what should you do if you’re moving, unhappy with your current dentist or just need a new one? How should you look for a new dentist? 

1. Ask your friends or family.

Word-of-mouth recommendations tend to be the most honest recommendations you can get, and the people who know you best are more likely to be a great source of personalized information. Ask friends, relatives and coworkers whether they would recommend their dentists. Ask them what their dentists do well — or aren’t all that great at. If a recommended dentist sounds like a good fit, see if there’s an opening.

2. Ask your doctor or a medical professional.

There’s a very good chance your doctor has a dentist, and a licensed and trained medical professional may be more likely to notice great care (and not-so exemplary care) than a layperson. While you’re at it, ask your doctor what he or she looks for in a dentist. The answers could be illuminating. 

3. Search online.

The internet can be a great resource, but it occasionally makes finding reliable information difficult. Luckily, there are many reputable companies that can help you find a dentist near you. Delta Dental even helps you search for network dentists by plan, location, specialty, languages spoken, office hours and accessibility options. 


4. Ask your current dentist.

If you’re moving, don’t be embarrassed to ask for a recommendation or a referral. After all, your dentist might know someone in your new area or have a professional relationship with practices in your new location. Your dentist may be able to recommend professional organizations or websites to check, and could potentially suggest practices or candidates to avoid. 

Visiting the dentist

After you’ve found a dentist with an opening and set your first appointment, don’t be surprised if you see some new, enhanced safety features. Your dentist might even offer some services through teledentistry.

When you arrive, you might find a bare waiting room. Don’t be alarmed. Some dental offices have removed their waiting room furniture and magazines to prevent contamination during the COVID-19 pandemic. So bring a book, or make sure that your phone is charged. You could even be asked to wait in your car. And don’t forget to keep brushing and flossing. You can only make a first impression once, after all.