Getting a Second Opinion

Whether or not to get a second opinion on a dental problem is a very important decision because they often clarify the situation for the patient, the dentist, or both. Often, when a patient asks for a second opinion, it is because they do not trust the dentist and has doubts about the best tactic for treating the condition. In other cases, one of the Bartlesville Dentists requests a second opinion from another dental specialist to obtain more information on the problem.

Oftentimes, people have gone to the same dentist and known them for many years, so they trust him or her and show up for appointments with a cooperative attitude. When a patient starts going to a new dentist, they have no past relationship to build from and problems can arise. The communication skills or style of the dentist may present prove to be a difficulty for the new patient. He or she may perceive a lack of competence or assurance from the new dentist. When this is the case, it is probably a good idea for the patient to get a second opinion. Patients should only undergo dental treatment when they feel comfortable and confident in their dentist.

In other situations, it is the dentist who needs a second opinion. I myself will ask a patient to seek a second opinion when I feel the need has arisen, such as when I suspect oral cancer. In such a situation, I would refer my patient to an oral surgeon for diagnosis and treatment options and recommendations. Readiness to seek a second opinion when needed or desired and teamwork between the Bartlesville dentists, other specialists, and the patient can be critical in achieving the best possible outcome.

Unfortunately, there are some instances when a second opinion does not prove helpful. Sometimes when a patient is not happy with what their dentist recommends, they will seek out multiple opinions -- getting 3rd, 4th, 5th opinions or more. In these cases, it may not be in the patient's best interest to accept the advice of the dentist who finally told them what they wanted to hear, particularly when it conflicts with many other opinions.