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How We Select DC's Best Dentists

December 5, 2019

If you needed a root canal, you’d probably ask your general dentist to recommend a good specialist—after all, dentists see one another’s work.

To put together this list of the area’s best dentists, we took the same approach—except we polled thousands of professionals.

With the help of a firm called topDentists, we mailed a ballot to every area dentist listed online with the American Dental Association, as well as those listed online with local and national dental societies—giving virtually every practitioner the chance to participate. We presented voters with lists of area dentists and asked them to rate their peers’ work on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being “excellent.” Respondents were asked to evaluate only practitioners whose work they personally knew and to put aside personal bias or political motivations. They were asked to take into consideration years of experience, continuing education, manner with patients, use of new techniques and technologies, and of course, physical results.

Once the balloting was completed, the scores were compiled and averaged. The numerical average required for inclusion varied depending on specialty and geographic area. We also took into account awards a dentist had received. His or her status in dental academies was sometimes a factor.

Once the decisions were final, we checked the included dentists against state dental boards for disciplinary actions to make sure they had an active license and were in good standing with the board.

For more information on the methodology: Call 706-364-0853; write to topDentists, PO Box 970, Augusta, Ga. 30903; e-mail [email protected]; or go to, where you’ll find complete dental listings for cities throughout the country.

Many fine practitioners are no doubt missing from this list, given that inclusion is based on the subjective judgment of fellow dentists. The topDentists firm remains confident that the polling methodology largely corrects for biases and represents the most reliable, accurate, and useful way to produce lists of top-rated dentists.

In this online list, winning dentists are identified with a “Best Dentist” logo. Our digital listings of physicians’ contact information also includes sponsors, but only top doctors designees carry the award logo.

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Edited by
Associate Editor

Caroline Cunningham joined Washingtonian in 2014 after moving to the DC area from Cincinnati, where she interned and freelanced for Cincinnati Magazine and worked in content marketing. She currently resides in College Park.


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