If you haven't been to the dentist's office lately, you may not know what to expect at your next dental appointment. Fear of the unknown can make people put off necessary dental procedures, but prompt treatment is always ideal. Here are four tips that will help you schedule your next dental appointment so you can get the dental care you need.
1. Call in advance.
Dentists are often very busy. Although most dentists will schedule same-day appointments for returning patients experiencing dental emergencies, most appointments need to be scheduled in advance. When you're ready for a dental check-up, call your dentist's office ahead of time. You will speak with a receptionist who can advise you of available openings and help you schedule your appointment. Call sooner rather than later, because you may need to wait new weeks for the next available appointment.
2. Have your dental records transferred.
Dentists keep records of their patients' oral health histories. All your x-rays are saved in your dental records, along with information about every dental procedure you have undergone. This information helps your dentist provide you with the best possible care. When you see a new dentist for the first time, you will need to have your dental records transferred. You can do this by calling or emailing your previous dentist with a formal request. You may need to sign and fax a consent form before your dentist can release your records.
3. Find out about new guidelines related to COVID-19.
COVID-19 is spread through exhaled droplets that can carry the virus. Many dentists have modified the way they conduct business to keep themselves, their staff members, and patients safe. Before arriving at your dentist's office, find out about any new guidelines you must follow. You will likely be required to wear a face mask until the dentist is ready to see you. Complying with your dentist's requests will help you stay safe and healthy.
4. Ask about anxiety relief options.
Some people have severe dental phobias. If you know you're likely to experience anxiety at your dental appointment, ask your dentist about anxiety relief options ahead of time. Anxiolytic drugs will put you at ease, which can make your dental appointment easier and more pleasant. Your dentist may recommend nitrous oxide, which is suitable for people with mild anxiety. People with more severe anxiety may benefit from oral or intravenous anxiety medication.
Reach out to a professional to learn more about receiving dental care.