Frequently asked questions
Do I need to arrive early for my first appointment?
Yes, be sure to arrive 10-15 minutes early to fill out any remaining patient forms.
What should I do if I require premedication?
Please be sure to request a prescription prior to your appointment, or if you are unsure, contact us and we can help.
What do I need to bring to my first appointment?
lease bring the following items with you to your appointment:
Patient Information Form
Dental Insurance Card (if applicable)
Identification such as Driver's License, Military ID or State ID
Patient Health History Form (if available)
How long is an appointment for usually?
It varies, but please plan on 1 to 1.5 hours for the first visit.
Why should I go to the dentist regularly?
Many people do not see a dentist on a regular basis. They only go when they have a problem. This is known as "crisis treatment" versus "preventive treatment." While these patients may feel they are saving money, it often ends up costing much more in dollars and time. This is because many dental problems do not have symptoms until they reach the advanced stages of the disease process. An example is tooth decay. It is typical to hear, "Nothing hurts... I don't have any problems."
Tooth decay often does not hurt until it gets close to the nerve of the tooth. It is not uncommon to see a patient with a huge cavity who has never felt a thing. The dentist can usually detect a cavity 3-4 years before it develops any symptoms. This early detection can help you prevent root canal treatment.
Should I floss in addition to brushing my teeth?
Flossing reduces the number of bacteria in your mouth. There are millions of these microscopic creatures feeding on food particles left on your teeth. These bacteria live in plaque which can be removed by flossing. Brushing your teeth gets rid of some of the bacteria in your mouth. Flossing gets rid of the bacteria the toothbrush can't get to. That's the bacteria hiding in the tiny spaces between your teeth. If you do not floss, you allow plaque to remain between your teeth. Eventually it hardens into tartar. Plaque can be removed by brushing. Only the dentist can remove tartar.
What does an X-Ray tell me?
Many diseases of the teeth and surrounding tissues cannot be seen when the dentist examines the mouth. An X-ray examination may reveal:
small areas of decay between the teeth or below existing restorations (fillings)
infections in the bone
periodontal (gum) disease
abscesses or cysts
some types of tumors
What is fluoride and why is it important to dental health?
Fluoride is a mineral that occurs naturally in many foods and in water. Some natural sources of fluoride are brewed tea, canned fish, cooked kale and spinach, apples, and skim milk. Some city water contains fluoride, so by drinking tap water you will acquire fluoride. If drinking water does not have fluoride, supplements are available.
The lack of exposure to fluoride places individuals of any age at risk for dental decay. Fluoride is important to dental health because it helps prevent tooth decay by making your tooth enamel more resistant to acid attacks from plaque bacteria in your mouth.
Studies have shown that children who consumed fluoridated water from birth had less dental decay. Fluoride can reverse early decay and help prevent osteoporosis, a disease that causes degenerative bone loss. Talk to your dentist or dental hygienist about whether you're getting the daily amount of fluoride you need.