So you’ve decided you want to get dental implants and permanently restore your smile. This is a life-changing decision and understandably, you want to choose the right person and dental clinic to do the job.
Dental implants can have an incredible impact on your life. Deciding whether or not to get dental implants is something that takes a significant amount of thought, and once you’re ready, it can take even longer to find the right dentist for the job.
In order to make the decision easier, there are a few key things you should take into account when you are trying to find the right clinic for your dental implant surgery. With these steps, you will be well on your way to sporting your new dream smile in no time. Here are the top 10 key things to consider when choosing the right dental clinic for dental implants.
1. Consider The Location
The search for the right dental clinic may bring you outside of your city, or even your province. When your dental health is at stake, it’s worth considering dental clinics that are both within your local community and potentially a little further out.
It might be worth making the trek to a new city if you know their reputation for dental implants is very good. However, ultimately, you need to consider whether or not travel time is worth it for you. The process of getting dental implants is quite lengthy and it will require multiple visits to the dentist to complete the procedure. It’s best to find a local clinic or be willing to travel if you are choosing a clinic out of town.
One great way to narrow things down is to search on Google Maps and make a list of all of the dental clinics that are within a reasonable range for you to travel. You can add clinics that are farther away too and use this as your starting list.
2. Pay Close Attention to Client Reviews
Next, once you have a list of clinics to consider, go through each one by one and check their online reviews.
You will be able to find client reviews for most dental clinics online, on Google My Business and Yelp. They are certainly something to consider before you commit to a clinic.
Another key place to check for honest reviews and references is on social media. Ask around in local Facebook or online groups to see if others have recommendations on where to go. Find out if the dentist is responsive when things go wrong and learn from the feedback. Often, patients will share their experiences and it is perfectly acceptable to post in groups and ask if others have had good or bad experiences at the clinics you are interested in.
3. Do Your Research
It is so important to research dental clinics thoroughly before committing to a clinic for implant surgery. One of the first places to look is their website. Specifically, you will want to pay close attention to the information on their website about dental implants. A dentist’s knowledge of dental implants and implant placement can often be seen from a simple look at their website. Do they have a dental implants section on their site?
If the answer is no, steer clear, the dentist may not offer implants, or they simply may not know enough about implants to have that information displayed online. Dentists with a detailed description of the implant procedure and what to expect have clearly put more time, effort and emphasis on their services. It is likely that they are more capable when it comes to implant surgery as a result.
- Does this dentist seem knowledgeable about placing dental implants?
- Is there thorough information about the dental implant procedure on their website?
- Are there before and after photos of dental implant patients?
What you truly want to establish is whether or not this clinic knows what they are talking about, and has a clear track record with regards to dental implant surgery.
4. Assess Training and Experience
How much experience do they have? As you research different dental clinics, it is essential to take note of each dentist’s training and experience. You should choose a dental clinic that has dentists who have years of experience placing implants.
It is completely acceptable to ask dentists about their training and education in the initial consultation as well. It’s a good idea to ask if your dentist has taken any specific training programs for placing dental implants. Ask how many years they have been doing this and feel free to ask for proof of their extended education. Most dentists will have their certifications clearly displayed in the office.
Dental implants are a complex procedure and you want your dentist to feel confident in their abilities. If they have not had specialized training and have less experience, you could be putting yourself and your health at risk.
5. Do They Offer In-House Services?
On the topic of training, some dentists are not trained to perform implant surgery and often require a third-party specialist to get the job done. If your dentist is able to offer dental implant placement in-house, it means that they have undergone the extra training required to place implants.
It is certainly good to know ahead of time, whether or not your dentist will be able to place implants in-house, or whether they require the help of a specialist. It is not a negative thing necessarily, however, chances are your dentist will already have a specialist that they work with and will pair you with them, rather than you doing your own research. Ultimately, you want to choose who is doing your dental implants to be sure they are qualified, credible and consistent in their work.
6. Ask to See Client Before and After Photos
You can learn quite a bit from before and after photos. They demonstrate whether or not the dentist can place an implant and whether or not they can do it consistently. If a dentist has a large display of dental implant before and after photos on the website, it is a sign they have the experience and ability to do the job well.
It also shows they are proud of their work when they put it on display which is a sign that they are experienced and invested in what they do. If there are no before and after photos displayed on the website or in the dental clinic, it is perfectly okay to ask to see them. It should be a red flag if the dentist has never documented or photographed their work, as it is a common practice nowadays.
7. Factor in the Cost
In many cases, dental implants have a relatively consistent price range across Canada. However, it can pay to shop around and compare pricing.
In Vancouver, the cost of dental implants can range from $4,000-$20,000 depending on the situation. Most dentists will be honest and list the price range on their websites. This is useful to get a general idea of the price, but it is best to go for a consultation to truly get a sense of what dental implants will cost for your specific case.
It is perfectly alright to shop around and compare costs at multiple clinics but in most cases, you will get what you pay for. Be wary of dentists that offer bundles or implants with add-on procedures for less. It is true that many dentists may have promotions, but a dentist that underquotes you or tries to add additional services may not have your best interest in mind. Get second, or even third opinions and if multiple dentists give you a similar price quote, you should feel confident that you have an accurate price.
You want to be sure the clinic you choose to have dental implant surgery is up to modern standards when it comes to dental technology. Offices with high-tech equipment such as lasers and CBCT scanners help to give your dentist a 3-D x-ray of your mouth, to accurately guide the plant location and place the implant correctly.
The right dental technology makes the process safer and more efficient for you as a patient, and your dentist as well. Dentists who use top-of-the-line technology for implant prep and surgery are often able to provide better treatment planning, find problems that others miss and place the implant as accurately as possible. Call the clinic or ask your dentist in person to learn more about the technology they use in the clinic.
9. Holistic Care & Options For Metal Allergies
Many patients can have metal sensitivities and metal allergies that can compromise the results of their dental implants. For these patients, it is very important to find a dentist that can provide an alternative to traditional titanium dental implants. Zirconia implants are the popular option – these are safe for patients with metal allergies and they are strong and tooth-coloured so they blend in well with your natural teeth.
However, not all dentists offer this option so it is in your best interest to shop around. Holistic dentists often take this into account and provide alternative materials rather than titanium. If you are unsure whether or not you have sensitivities to metal, you should ask your family doctor for an allergy test before you get implants. This can save you time and money in the long run, to ensure your implants are safe for your body.
10. Book a Consultation
Once you have done your research, book a consultation with the dentists that you are considering. This gives you a chance to ask specific questions in person and get a better sense of the dentist and their clinic in person.
You are under no pressure to proceed with implant surgery after a consultation so these are a great way to learn more about the process and get your questions answered.
Schedule an Appointment at VCCID
At VCCID, Dr. Balogh and his team have over 30 years of experience in the dental industry. Dr. Balogh focuses on dental implants and he has undergone years of education, as well as teaching experience to truly stand out in the field. His practice is based in Burnaby, Metrotown and he takes a holistic, full-body approach to treatment and post-care. To book a dental implant consultation at VCCID, visit our booking page. We look forward to meeting with you and helping you restore your smile.