So you’ve decided on scheduling an appointment with the dentist. That’s great ‘cause you’re taking a step in preventing periodontal diseases and even improving overall dental health. But it’s not a guarantee you’d get anything from it.
What would you be doing before and after the visit? You need to make preparations. Here’s what you can do to make the best of that appointment.
1. Deal With Dental Anxiety
Is this your first time visiting the dentist? Do you dread that dental office? Maybe you’ve got dental anxiety. But it’s easy to get rid of. And you’d be using lots of psychological tricks. Look at some of them.
So what you’re going to the dentist, fun is not a bad word. Don’t change your routine the day before. And depending on how busy your dentist is, you may have to wait a bit for your turn, so you can listen to some music in that time.
#Get Used To The Tools
Face your fears. You’re not scared of the dentist. You’re scared of those tools. And you’re not alone. There’s a research that proves that the sounds of dental instruments have a lot to do with dental phobia.
But it’s an era of painless dentistry so this is all in your head. You should get the dental apps out there that allow you play with the tools you’d see on your visit.
#Don’t Change Your Brushing Technique
And I don’t mean resisting good dental habits. You shouldn’t get new mouthwash or fluoride treatments the night before your appointment.
You’re dealing with chemical changes and you don’t want the doctor to get a wrong impression of your dental health.
Don’t worry, the dentist won’t be mad at you for not adopting the right dental hygiene practices.
2. Confirm Your Dental Appointment
It’s 2017, there are several ways you can get this done. From sending a text to emailing your dentist, there’s a lot of technology to get you in that dental chair and at the right time.
Missed appointments do happen. But they can be avoided. Maybe you forgot. Depending on the dental office, you may get a text message or even a call so you can confirm your appointment.
But some things just don’t go as planned. Maybe you have a more pressing appointment and won’t make it. You should call in(early enough) to cancel your appointment. If you haven’t flouted any rules, you should be able to reschedule.
3. Prepare Your Medical/Dental History
Your dentist may obtain your medical history by asking specific questions to formulate a diagnosis.
Even if this is the first time you’re receiving dental care, you’ve got something to say. List your medical, surgical and family histories. Every information provides a clue in medicine.
Sometimes, the pain you may be feeling in your gum is tied to allergies.
Don’t forget your medication. Every drug elicits a reaction in the body. If you’re pregnant or undergoing treatment for any disease, there are some treatments your dentist can’t recommend.
And be honest. Are you taking any cigarettes, alcohol, or recreational drugs like marijuana and cocaine? Then let him know. Believe me, they affect your dental health in more ways than you know of.
4. Do A Little Research
Are you going for a routine checkup? Do you suspect you may need a tooth extraction or any other advanced dental procedure? Then it wouldn’t hurt to do a little research.
And no, it’s not so you’d self-medicate. A few hours spent on the internet can’t get you years of experience in dentistry.
Remember dental anxiety? Not many things deal with it like that confidence that your problem has a solution.
5. Ask For Payment Plans and Insurance
I’m talking prices and discounts. Dentists provide services so you’d hardly get a fixed price for anything. And cheaper doesn’t always mean better. Look around for the damaging effects of most dental problems and you’d see there’s really not much to pay for good dental health.
If you’re paying directly, check for payment plans that allow you deposit a percentage before and after your dental work. You may qualify for a discount after a certain time but you wouldn’t know if you don’t ask.
Depending on your state and even type of treatment, your insurance can cover the costs, but you’d need to find out how it works from your insurance provider.
6. Write Your Questions Down
No information on the internet can ever replace professional dental advice. That’s why you need to ask questions. But it’s not about the number. You don’t have all day, other patients are waiting in line, so you’d have to prioritize.
Asking questions makes you informed and in a better position to make the right dental care decisions.
You should write everything on a sheet of paper so you’d remember.
If there’s a disease or dental problem you’re seeking treatment for, here are some general questions you can ask your dentist.
- What’s the name of this disease/condition?
- How serious is it?
- Are there any foods or drinks I should be taking or avoiding?
And some treatment-specific questions.
- How effective is this treatment?
- How quickly do I have to start treatment?
- What happens if I don’t have the treatment
Then check out some questions about medicines.
- Are there any side effects of taking this medicine?
- Will it interact with other drugs I take?
Bottom line: Dentists love to answer questions, so ask.
7. Arrive Early
If this is your first time at that dental office, then it’s possible there’s a lot of paperwork to complete with info. Updating your personal and contact information, and maybe medical records come in here.
And you may need to arrange another visit, just to avoid any future dental complications so this is also when to schedule for follow-ups.
There’s a lot going through your mind, so it’s good if you arrive some minutes early even if it’s just to cool off before meeting the dentist.
It’s a good thing you’re making an effort to see a dentist, but you need to walk out of that dental office satisfied. Many people don’t. Use these 7 tips and you’d be itching to get back to the dentist.