Even though it may seem to be a frightening experience, a visit to the dentist certainly doesn’t have to be – especially not at Chatham. Dentists are there to help you with the best of their abilities and persevere to make your experience a comfortable one. First, make sure to select a dentist in Chatham who you can trust and puts your mind at ease. After you have chosen one to your liking, pick up the phone and schedule a check-up. The majority of dental visits tend to be regular check-ups, which ideally occur every six months. Avoiding them can lead problems to go undetected and worsen over time before ultimately affecting your health. To take preventative measures, make it a routine to see the dentist every few months, and read the following information to prepare yourself for your first visit:

Before the Visit

Prior to calling the dentist’s office, make sure that you have enough free time off of work or school for your appointment. This will keep you from feeling anxious about having to go back in time. In regards to dental insurance, if you have it, check to see if your dentist is in-network before making your appointment to save money. However, if you don’t have insurance, try to find out in advance about the cost of your appointment. On the day of the appointment, arrive there ahead of time. You will be expected to fill out the necessary paperwork to provide a complete record of your medical history. Arriving before the time of your actual appointment will give the staff time to set you up and allow you to settle in. Keep your driver’s license and insurance card ready in hand right before going to the reception desk.

During the Visit

If you are a new patient or have not visited the dentist in a long time, prepare yourself for a star-quality treatment because your teeth will be receiving a deep cleaning session. During the cleaning process, a dental hygienist will use ultrasonic tools to scrape off any buildup of plaque and tartar on your teeth and along the gum line to prevent gum disease, cavities, and other potential issues. The hygienist will be following that up with polishing, and possibly flossing, your teeth. Next, the dentist will do a more thorough exam by checking each individual tooth for pockets or gaps between your teeth and gums. While the dentist is looking for problem spots, it may hurt and bleed, but the pain will only last for a short amount of time. Every year, you will typically get X-rays done to help find issues that have recently appeared or are difficult to see with the naked eye. This can include damage to the jawbone, impacted teeth, abscesses, cysts, tumors or decay. However, if it has been years since your last visit, you will be instructed to have an X-ray taken. In the end, the dentist will speak to you about the current state of your teeth and discuss what the next steps are.

After the Visit

If your mouth still experiences sensitivity or soreness after your appointment, you can take over-the-counter pain relievers to alleviate the discomfort. Call the office between routine visits whenever you have any questions or your teeth hurt, or your jaw swells. Do not hesitate to notify your dentist straight away if you notice serious issues, like broken teeth, that are an emergency.

Follow-up Care

Once your mouth is healthy and well, you should have cleaning done at least every six months. Depending on what the dentist finds during your exam, they will recommend a treatment plan that is specifically catered to your needs. If there are any problems that need to be taken care of, there is a high chance that you will need to come back sooner than you normally would for another routine visit. If there are any procedures that you are interested in for improving the overall look of your smile, ask your dentist for their suggestions. In the case of more complex procedures that need to be undertaken, talk to your dentist about a payment plan to cover your part of the cost.

As you can see, a visit to the dentist is not a scary experience at all! Here, at Chatham Family Dental, we prioritize your level of comfort and oral health above anything else. We provide excellent services, including teeth cleaning, dental implants, braces, Invisalign, teeth whitening, and more! If you’re looking for a dentist near you in Chatham for your first check-up or an emergency appointment, contact us at Chatham Family Dental now! We promise that you will leave satisfied, with a brighter, whiter, and happier smile! Call us today!