A visit to the dentist doesn’t necessarily have to be a dreadful experience. Most dentists nowadays try to make the office visits as easy as possible, often allowing you to relax and watch movies and TV before the procedure. The dentists at Emerson dental arts may also break the procedures into several visits so it’s not too much for one visit. And there are many options for sedation and pain relief during the dental procedure. Regular visits to the dentist put you closer to better dental health and allow you to smile with more confidence.
Before the Appointment
To ensure you feel less rushed and therefore less anxious, plan enough time off from work or school. Find out exactly how long the cleaning exam will take and add a little more time to that. If it’s been sometime before you visited the dentist, you might need to stay longer in the chair. If possible, make an end-of-day appointment so that you can go straight home after the procedure. Check if you have dental insurance so that you can save money, but be prepared to co-pay the balance after the insurance. If you don’t have insurance, find out how much you should pay ahead of time and plan accordingly.
On the day of the appointment, arrive early to give yourself time to fill out the paperwork and forms, allowing the staff time to set up. Have your insurance card and driver’s license ready.
During the procedure, the dentist or hygienist may provide eye shields and cover your chest with paper cloth. The dentist will work one tooth at a time, scraping off any hard buildup of plaque and tartar on the surfaces along the gum line, and flossing between your teeth as well. If you have mouth pain or your jaw hurts during the procedure, ensure the dentist is aware. He or she can also provide resting breaks whenever you need them. After the scraping and rinsing are done, the dentist will use a tool with a spinning head to polish your teeth and rinse again. Generally, X-rays should be done at least every year to identify any problems that are hard to see.
The dentist then proceeds to do a thorough exam of your oral health, checking each tooth for problems as well as gaps between your gums and teeth. A periodontal probe will be used to find problem spots, and measure the depth of any identified gum pockets. The findings will be recorded in your chart. The dentist will then discuss with you the findings and what should come next.
If you’re a new patient or you’re visiting after a couple of years, you may be required to do an X-ray so that the dentist gets a complete look of your teeth, gums, and supporting bone structures. You’ll have to stay back for a deeper cleaning session with the hygienist because the longer you’ve stayed the more tartar has built up on your teeth and the surrounding gum line. There are options for numbing your pain, especially if you have sensitive teeth. Your gums may also bleed, especially when the dentist is checking the gums for pockets. It could also be painful but the pain won’t last for long. Know that there are chances that the dentist will find problems. Don’t be overwhelmed as you’re already on the way to fixing them.