Visiting a new dentist doesn’t have to leave you guessing.

There are many reasons you might need to change dentists, but putting in the work to choose a great one can make all the difference for your short- and long-term oral health. Once you’ve gone through the process of finding the right dentist for you, there’s just one more hurdle to cross: going to your first dental appointment. This can be incredibly nerve-wracking, especially when you don’t know what to expect.

Rest assured, your comfort matters to us, and we want to do our best to reduce your anxiety and ensure your first appointment goes smoothly. As a result, we’ve put together a quick guide on what you can expect during your first appointment at our office.

Arrival

When you arrive at our office for your first visit, you’ll need to arrive at least 15 minutes early to complete your new patient paperwork. If you’re worried about arriving at our office on time, you can fill these forms out online before your appointment. This streamlines the check-in process and makes it easier for you to get in and out of our office quickly. Additionally, Dr. Wohlers is a family dentist who treats patients of all ages and works hard to make appointments convenient for families. You can schedule appointments for your entire family on the same day, allowing you to take only a single day off of work to get everyone’s dental appointment done.

In this case, getting new patient forms done ahead of time online can be especially helpful. You don’t have to worry about wrestling your kids out the door early enough for you to complete paperwork for everyone before your appointments. This makes getting to the appointment and getting your treatment started easier than ever. Our waiting room is also designed with patients of all ages in mind, so it’s comfortable and stocked with activities that will keep your kids entertained while you wait.

X-Rays and Digital Photographs

Once you’re called back, we’ll take digital X-rays and photographs of your teeth. This helps Dr. Wohlers spot issues that are hard to detect with the naked eye, such as small spots of decay, cracked teeth, and failing restorations. This helps you get treatments and diagnoses faster than you otherwise would have, especially in the case of failing restorations, which can be hard to spot without an X-ray image. X-rays also help Dr. Wohlers get an idea of the overall health of your teeth, their supporting structures, and your jawbone. You won’t need X-rays every time you visit our office, but Dr. Wohlers will keep the images in your chart to compare future X-rays against.

Professional Cleaning and First Exam

Next, you’ll run through the paces of a normal dental appointment, including a professional dental cleaning. This cleaning removes plaque and hardened tartar from your teeth, helping to prevent cavities and gum disease. Dr. Wohlers will also take the time to examine the health of your teeth and gums. She’ll check for signs of cavities, perform a periodontal assessment that includes measuring the pocket depth of your gums to ensure they’re healthy and completing an oral cancer screening.

If you suffer from dental anxiety, you can talk with Dr. Wohlers and our staff about it before your professional cleaning and exam begins. We want you to feel safe and comfortable, so we’ll do what we can to help you stay as relaxed as possible throughout the appointment. We can work out hand signals you can use if you need a break or discuss using nitrous oxide, also called laughing gas, to help relieve anxiety. You’re also welcome to use headphones and music to help yourself relax throughout the appointment. Let us know what will work for you, and we’ll do our best to accommodate your needs.

Consultation

Instead of just moving on to the next patient when your dental exam is complete, Dr. Wohlers will take the time to speak with you. This gives you the opportunity to talk about your treatment goals, ask any questions you may have about your oral health or our practice, and get advice from Dr. Wohlers. You will also discuss any oral health issues she may have found during the exam. Dr. Wohlers will describe the issue she found, explain your treatment options, and do her best to answer any of your questions about it so you can reach an educated decision about which treatment is best for you.

Scheduling

Once you finish speaking with Dr. Wohlers, you’ll be able to schedule your next appointment. If you don’t need any additional treatments, this will be as simple as scheduling your next appointment for six months from now. We understand life can be busy, so we’ll do our best to work around your schedule and find something that works for you and your family. If you or a family member need treatment for an oral health issue like a cavity or gum disease, you’ll be able to schedule that treatment before you leave our office as well.

Payment

We want to make sure you can afford the care your entire family needs, so we have several payment options you can choose from. In addition to accepting major credit cards, personal checks, and cash, we also offer financing through CareCredit. CareCredit is a credit card specifically created to help patients pay for medical treatments. It allows you to pay for your treatment in monthly installments that fit your budget, often with little to no interest.

We also have a unique payment option through our VIP club for patients who don’t have dental insurance. For a small monthly fee, you gain benefits, such as two free professional cleanings a year, coverage for X-rays, and discounts on dental treatments. Few dental practices offer similar memberships, but if you don’t have dental insurance, this can ensure you and your family get the care you need when you need it. Additionally, since we know being blindsided by the cost of a treatment is never a good feeling, we’re happy to estimate the cost of your treatment and how much your insurance or VIP membership is likely to pay before you undergo it. This ensures you know exactly what to expect and can help you arrange a financing plan beforehand.

Be prepared for your first appointment with a new dentist.

Your first appointment at our office doesn’t have to be intimidating or anxiety-inducing. We do our best to ensure you know what to expect from your first appointment before you arrive and try to keep you as relaxed as possible every step of the way. If you’re ready to schedule your first appointment with our family dentist, feel free to call our office at any time!