What You Need to Know
Please arrive at our practice 15 minutes prior to your appointment to complete the registration process. Because some dental insurances do not provide you with an insurance card, we may ask you for information to verify your coverage. If this is your first time seeing us, we will ask that you complete some paperwork as part of our registration process. We also may ask that you bring or try to obtain any x-rays that may have been taken at another dentist’s office in the past 6-12 months. While we are able to take x-rays on-site, it is best for us to have any additional information that will help us to give you the highest quality of care.
When you arrive for your first appointment, our FPA Practice Manager and Administrative Coordinator will assist you in all aspects of registration. Once you check in with them, they will verify your personal information, provide you with any forms necessary for your visit, and inform the dental assistant and dentist of your arrival.
In order to ensure that your visit will be covered under your insurance policy, we will need to confirm your personal information at each visit to our practice. This will minimize your out-of-pocket costs. We accept all major credit cards, as well as cash or check.
We know your time is valuable and we will make every effort to see you at your scheduled appointment time. Unfortunately, emergencies, complications, and other issues may lead to unexpected delays. If your physician is running more than 15 minutes late, we will advise you of the expected wait time.
What to Expect During Your Visit
Our dental assistant will seat you in the dental chair and drape you. If this if your first visit, the dentist will do a comprehensive exam which includes a thorough look at your entire mouth, and head and neck area. The dentist will also ask you to provide a full health history, including any medications that you are currently taking. Even if you have had regular care under another dentist, we will want to become familiar with your health. This will allow us to notice changes or problems more easily during future visits. On subsequent visits, please make sure to tell us if your health status has changed.
If we are doing a comprehensive exam, you can expect that the dentist will do the following:
- Head and neck — Your dentist will check your head and neck, temporomandibular (jaw) joint, salivary glands, and lymph nodes in your neck area.
- Soft tissue — The soft tissues of the mouth include the tongue, the inside of the lips and cheeks, and the floor and roof of the mouth. Your dentist will check for spots, cuts, swellings, growths, or other abnormal areas that may indicate problems with oral health.
- Periodontal — A periodontal examination involves checking the gums to determine the overall health of the supporting structures of your teeth.
- Occlusion — Your dentist may check how well your teeth fit together by examining your bite.
- Examination of teeth — Your dentist will check for decay by looking at every tooth surface (using a mirror to see the back sides of teeth). He or she also will poke your teeth with a tool called an explorer to detect cavities. Decayed tooth enamel is softer than healthy enamel. If you have fillings, permanent bridges, crowns, or other restorations, your dentist will check to make certain that they remain whole and sound, and that the teeth around them have no sign of decay.
- X-rays — These will be taken to help your dentist look for decay (cavities) or other oral health problems that cannot be seen during the clinical exam.
What to Tell Your Dentist
Your dentist needs to know everything that may help him or her diagnose problems or treat you appropriately. To help us provide you with excellent care, please be sure to tell us the following:
- If you are afraid of the dentist — Many people have fears of the dentist that go back to childhood. Pain control and treatment techniques change constantly. The things you fear most may not exist any longer or there may be new and improved ways of dealing with them. If there is anything that we can do to make your visit more comfortable, please let us know and we will do our best to accommodate it.
- Your overall health — Please tell us if you've been diagnosed with any diseases or are taking any new medicines, since these details may require a different approach to dental treatments or prevention.
- Your dental health — Before the examination starts, please tell us if you think you have a new cavity, if your teeth have become sensitive, or if you feel any lumps inside your mouth.
During a checkup visit, we will check your gums and teeth, clean and polish your teeth, and talk to you about caring for your teeth and gums properly at home. We may also do a clinical examination, diagnose problems, and recommend treatments. If we need to provide you with any follow-up care based on findings, we will make an appointment for you to return.
We participate in the following insurance plans:
- Aetna PPO
- MetLife PPO
- Cigna PPO
- United Healthcare PPO
- Delta Dental PPO
- Guardian PPO