Think about the ways we select a dentist. Some will ask a friend or neighbor. Others will go online and check reviews. Some will even respond to advertising that comes in the mail. But even with all of these methods, we cannot be sure how good their work is. This is where accreditation comes in.
Imagine that your dentist’s work could be evaluated by the top dentists in the world. They would have to submit their work for evaluation and it would have to pass the highest of quality standards. The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD) has a program that performs this exact type of screening.
For 35 years, the AACD has offered this credentialing program. Accreditation serves to set the standard for excellence in cosmetic dentistry. Achieving accredited status from the AACD requires dedication to continuing education, careful adherence to the protocol, and a resolve to produce exceptional dentistry. Over the past 35 years, thousands of dentists have attempted to complete the process but only 400 have been able to meet the standard. Of these 400, only 200 in the world still practice dentistry today.
The process begins with a written examination. If the candidate passes the written part, they can then start the clinical portion. This involves completing five different reconstructive procedures that are pre-determined by the association. Each case is photographed under high magnification and also requires a written report. Once the documentation is complete, the case is submitted for evaluation.
After the clinical portions are passed, a final oral examination is conducted along with a review of all the clinical photography and reporting. Only after passing all of these steps does the dentist receive his accredited status.
When you are ready to look for a new dentist, let AACD help you. Go to aacd.com and select the “Find a Dentist” tab. You will be asked to enter your location and you will be given a list of the dentists in your area. Keep in mind that less than 1 percent of the world’s dentists are accredited so you may have to travel to get to one. This first step will be a lot more reliable in getting the quality work that you need than asking a neighbor, going through online reviews or responding to a coupon.
Dr. James T. Gavrilos is accredited with AACD. His office is located at 129 Park Avenue in Barrington. For more information, call 847-381- 4040 or visit barringtondentist.com.