Preparing for Your Visit
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Preparing for Your Visit: What to Expect
Regular dental exams are an important part of preventive health care. Let’s talk about why it’s important to stay routine with your dentist and what you can expect during a typical visit to our office.
During your dental exam, our hygienist will clean your teeth and check gum disease. Our dentist, Dr. Coope, will spend time going over your overall oral health; evaluating your risk of developing other oral health problems by checking your face, neck and mouth for abnormalities during what’s called an oral cancer screening. A dental exam might also include dental x-rays or other diagnostic procedures.
During a dental exam, our hygienists and dentist will likely discuss your diet and oral hygiene habits and might demonstrate proper brushing and flossing techniques.
New Patient Paperwork
Please download and bring with you the following document for your first visit.
Regular dental exams help protect your oral health and general well-being. A dental exam gives your dentist a chance to detect any problems early — when they’re most treatable. It might feel like going to the dentist is expensive, but we always tell our patients that dentistry can be similar to a car. Is it cheaper to change to oil in your car regularly, or never change the oil and just replace the motor when it explodes? Right! Routine maintenance is what gives you your best chance to keep dental costs down and your teeth in the best shape possible. Treating problems when they are small will help save you thousands of dollars down the road.
The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends that patients schedule regular dental exams at intervals determined by a dentist, anywhere from every 6 months to every 3 months. Frequency is determined by risk factors such as periodontitis.
During a dental exam, the hygienists and Dr. Coope will together, as a team, do the following:
- Take dental x-rays if necessary
- Evaluate your overall health and oral hygiene (i.e sugar frequency, tobacco use, etc.)
- Remove stains or deposits (such as tarter or plaque) on your teeth during your dental cleaning
- Evaluate your risk of tooth decay and gum or bone disease
- Demonstrate proper hygiene techniques
- Propose any treatment needed
During a dental exam, your dentist or hygienist will also ask about any health problems you have or medications you’re taking and discuss how they might affect your oral health. If you have prosthetic replacements — such as dentures or bridges — your dentist or hygienist will examine how well they fit and discuss the need for adjustments.
If you were seen at a different dental office before, you may be asked to sign a records release form so we have access to your prior dental records. All new patients will be asked to fill out our New Patient packet (available here) and bring in your insurance card and list of current medications.
If you’re anxious about having a dental exam or procedure, share your concerns with your dentist or hygienist. He or she might be able to adjust your treatment or make suggestions to help you feel more comfortable.
After your dental exam, the dentist or hygienist will discuss your oral health, including your risk of tooth decay, gum disease and any other oral health problems, and preventive measures you can take to improve and protect your oral health.
The dentist or hygienist will also recommend the best time to return for a follow-up visit. If you’re at high risk of tooth decay or gum disease or have other oral health problems, the dentist or hygienist might recommend more frequent checkups like mentioned above.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call the office at 302-741-2044 and we’ll be happy to help!