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Setting-up Your First Dental Appointment As An Adult

It is quite normal to feel a bit anxious when setting up your initial dental appointment as a grown-up. You might worry that you aren’t prepared for what’s gonna happen on the dentist’s chair. 

As a child, you might not have cared much when your parents or guardians first set you up with a dentist. And your first milk-teeth extraction might have even been pulled off by anyone but a dentist.

It is ideal to have a routine dental appointment twice a year or after every 6 months. So if you’re looking forward to better oral health you would need to plan this out given it’s the first time you’re doing it. After all, your dental health is a critical part of your overall well-being.

To help you learn how to set-up your first dental appointment as an adult, it is important to know what to do and expect before, during, and after your initial visit to an oral health practitioner.

With a better understanding of how things operate in the field of dentistry, you would be more prepared, and relaxed prior to your visit with your dentist.

Planning Before the Initial Appointment

Depending on the type of service you’re seeking, you have to prepare a number of things prior to your first dental appointment. If you have time, do research about your condition so you’d get a better idea about your oral health problem. This helps you and your trusted dental practitioner assess the right course of action to resolve your issue.

It’s a good measure to prepare the necessary information that your dentist might want to know, for them to easily address your trouble. List down your questions as well as current health conditions and medications you are undergoing. This way you would not forget all the essential information you want your dentist to know.

If you have the information on your former dental clinic, it would be good to ask them to transfer your dental records to the new one. Doing this would save you time and your new dental care practitioner would definitely appreciate it.

Ask questions upon reaching out to your dental clinic so they can provide you any preventive treatment for the meantime if you’re having an emergency. Knowing what to expect during some common dental procedures helps you estimate how long an appointment might take or even how many visits are required to resolve your concern. 

You can ask your dentist or their staff to find out the best schedule for your meeting. While you’re at it, get an estimate of your bill so you are financially prepared. You also want to discuss options like dental insurance in advance.

On top of those, and if your dentist recommends a more complex course of action, ask them if you’d need someone to drive you home after the designated procedure. They can also provide you with some post-operative instructions and help you determine whether you need an extra hand for a few more hours.

Confirm your appointment at least 24 hours prior. It cannot be stressed enough that your dentist would appreciate you cleaning up before the actual dental visit. Brush and floss your teeth, you would be making your dentist a favor.

Arrive early so you are prepared if there are any last-minute forms to be filled out. Following the steps mentioned, you can be more relaxed and less anxious on the actual day of the appointment.

What to Expect During Your First Dental Appointment

On your first visit to a dental clinic -especially if it’s been a while, it is essential that you undergo a thorough dental examination. The main objective of this procedure is for your dentist to identify oral health threats as early as possible. They would conduct a careful inspection of your teeth, gums, and mouth to look for any indications of oral problems.

Evaluating your overall oral health is the primary focus of the examination, this includes an assessment on your likelihood of getting cavities, tooth decay, and gum diseases. If you need tooth replacement or restoration, your trusted oral care practitioner would be able to discuss it during this time.

Your dentist would start by checking your face, cheeks, neck, and jaw. They would try to find any abnormalities like inflammations, or lumps and bumps. After which they proceed to examine the inside of your mouth, your tongue, and gums and other soft tissues.

Most often than not, during your first or non-routine visit, extensive cleaning is conducted to remove plaque and tartar build-up. An instrument called a periodontal scaler is used to scrape the hardened plaque on the teeth as well as on the gumline.

After removing the stains and deposits on your teeth, your dentist would decide whether or not you should undergo fluoride treatment. This process is observed to improve your teeth’s health and prevent cavities.

Depending on the kind of oral health problem you may have, your dental practitioner might also recommend you have an x-ray taken. This procedure is usually undertaken under conditions such as having an impacted wisdom tooth, a serious tooth decay, jawbone damage, or diagnosing whether you’re at risk of teeth-loss.

After Your First Visit to the Dentist

Provided that you have a healthy oral condition then the next visit wouldn’t be until after 6 months. Your dentist could also recommend otherwise if you have more serious dental issues, especially if you’re at a high risk of gum diseases or tooth decay.

The current overall assessment of your total dental health would be discussed by your dentist. This includes the treatments you still might need to undergo, a schedule for a follow-up check-up, and address all their findings upon your visit. They would discuss post-procedure instructions and tips to guide you in maintaining good oral health.

If you are experiencing issues such as pain or swelling, don’t hesitate to inform your oral care provider immediately. If you have suffered a broken tooth, it might be a case for an emergency so contact your nearest dental clinic right away.