What to Expect From a Dental Check-Up

Has it been a while since your last dental appointment? Are you feeling a little nervous about getting a check-up? Dental check-ups are vital for keeping up not only with your oral health, but also your overall physical health in general. Taking a trip to the dentist is a common fear that many people of all ages experience, but it doesn’t have to be a scary prospect! Oftentimes, it is just taking the first step towards the thing that you fear that helps you to realize it isn’t worth the fear after all. 

At Charvet Dental Center, we strive to provide care that alleviates the feeling of hesitation that keeps so many people from making sure their teeth are in good shape. Our team of understanding and experienced individuals knows how to guide you through the process so that you feel confident in your dental journey, but it is also helpful to know what to expect from your first dental visit. That’s why we have compiled a complete walk-through of our check-up process from start to finish so that there are no surprises when you walk through our doors. Read below to learn more!

New Patients

Whether you are a new patient coming to our office for the first time or an old patient who hasn’t visited us in a while, the first check-up is a very similar and straightforward process. All of our dental exams are conducted with an educational focus. At Charvet Dental Center, we believe in empowering our patients with practical knowledge that they can use to maintain their oral health outside of the office.

Step One: Preparing for Your Appointment

Prior to your scheduled appointment, you’ll want to prepare a few important items that may be helpful during the intake process. First off, you’ll want to make sure that our office is in your insurance network. While we accept most major insurance plans, you may want to call ahead of time to be sure that there won’t be any issues with payment when the time comes. However, even if your insurance doesn’t cover the entire cost of your check-up, we will be happy to work with you to set up a payment plan.  

It is also a good idea to have a list of questions you might want to ask Dr. Hunter, Sr. or Dr. Hunter, Jr., and to take an inventory of any new health updates that your doctor might need to know before your exam to ensure that you make the most of your time with the doctor. We are always happy to answer your questions!

Step Two: Intake

When you walk through our doors, you’ll be greeted by one of our welcoming staff members. They’ll pass you one of our intake forms to fill out while you wait for them to call you to the back office. Make sure to fill the form out to the best of your ability. Have your insurance card and driver’s license ready as well!

Step Three: Dental Cleaning

Your initial exam should take around one hour. You’ll first meet with one of our dental hygienists who will ask you questions about your dental health and care routine and make sure your teeth are clean and prepped for your dental exam with Drs. Hunter, Sr. or Hunter, Jr. This gentle cleaning process allows your hygienist to remove the buildup of plaque that simple brushing and flossing may not reach. You may even have a few X-rays of your teeth done so that your dentist can review them before meeting with you. 

For most people, leaning back in the chair and letting your hygienist clean your teeth can be a relaxing time, kind of like getting a haircut! You may chat with your hygienist, learn a little about how to take care of your teeth, and enjoy the hour or so of attentive care you’ll be receiving. Sometimes our patients may experience discomfort during cleaning. That can be normal and should not be a cause of fear or hesitation. Just let us know how you’re feeling and we will adjust our process to make sure you feel safe and comfortable with your care. 

Step Four: Dental Exam

Now comes the moment you’ve been waiting for. By the time Drs. Hunter, Sr. or Hunter, Jr. step through the door, they will have already spoken with your hygienist and reviewed your X-rays. Then they’ll carefully examine your teeth and gums to make sure that no further treatment is needed. 

We conclude with the application of a fluoride varnish. Fluoride, a naturally occurring mineral, helps to strengthen your teeth and works in conjunction with the calcium in your saliva to keep your teeth healthy and cavity-resistant. 

Step Five: Follow-Up

That wasn’t so bad, was it? Now that you’re done with your exam, you’ll schedule a follow-up appointment with your dentist for 6 months in the future and we’ll see you then to repeat this list!

If your doctor finds a cavity or recommends additional treatment, we will get you scheduled to come in for a visit in the near future so that all your concerns are addressed in a timely manner. Our team at the Charvet Dental Center also offers cosmetic and restorative dental care alongside general dentistry, so be sure to ask your dentist if any of these services are right for you. 

Between Appointments

The real work for keeping up with your oral health happens between your dental check-ups. That means brushing your teeth and flossing regularly, avoiding an excess of sweets, and following up with your dentist with any new updates or oral health concerns. 

Remember, preventative dental care is so important to your overall health. If left unchecked, accumulated plaque or decay can quickly develop into gum disease or gingivitis. These can be linked to larger symptoms such as heart disease and high blood pressure to diabetes and pancreatic cancer. While these health issues may sound scary, the best way to prevent them from being concerning to your health at all is by getting regular check-ups every 6 months. 

Put Your Mind at Ease with Regular Check-Ups at Charvet Dental Center

For over 50 years, the Charvet Dental Center has delivered excellent dental care to the Metairie area. We know our patients, and we want them to feel confident in the service they are receiving, especially if the prospect of getting their teeth checked is a bit anxiety-inducing. The value of a regular dental check-up is extraordinarily important to your overall health, and we know how to put your mind at ease to ensure you receive the care you deserve.

Now that we’ve cleared up what your next dental appointment will look like, how about scheduling one with us today? Click here to set up an appointment.