Going to the dentist for an examination and teeth cleaning can be an intimidating process, especially if it is your first time. Dentists are professionally trained, and their primary goal will be to maximize your sense of comfort while providing excellent oral care. In many cases, after you have checked in, a dental hygienist will be the one to actually clean your teeth, conduct a basic evaluation and take any necessary X-rays. The cleaning process may vary, but it might include flossing, scraping teeth that have signs of buildup and polishing the teeth afterwards. The dentist will review the X-rays to determine if you have any signs of tooth decay, ensure your gums are healthy and check for indications or oral cancer.
Understanding a Comprehensive Exam
If it is your first visit to the dentist, he or she might do a more comprehensive exam, which includes thoroughly examining your entire mouth and inquiring about your general medical history, which will help to track any changes or problems that arise in-between future visits.
Communication is Key to a Successful Visit
Try to be transparent about any fears or concerns you may have; communication with your dentist is just as important as it is with your primary doctor. Inform the dentist about whether you are concerned about bad breath, feel that you may have a cavity, feel a lump inside your mouth or have any areas that are more sensitive than others.
Be as Open as Possible
You should inform your dentist of any changes to your overall health, regardless of whether it relates to your mouth or not. Several different diseases can directly affect your teeth. For example, if you have diabetes, you may be at a higher risk for periodontal disease. The type of anesthetic the dentist uses could also be influenced by certain health conditions. You should inform your dentist of any medications you take as well. Being as open as possible will make your first trip to the dentist a much more relaxing experience.