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How to Make a Dentist Appointment?
Our lives tend to get busy and take unexpected turns at the least favorable times. Before you know it, it has been so long since you have seen the dentist that your oral health is crying out for assistance. Postponing a dentist shelby twp mi visit until a problem arises that forces you to reach out is quite common among patients. While there are some signs that indicate it’s time to see a dentist, prevention plays a crucial role in your oral health management.
Making a dentist’s appointment is often the last and most challenging step after finding the right practice that fits your needs. That’s because we suddenly realize that we are about to face our fears, phobias, and uncertainty. This article explains the top signs it’s time to call a dentist and tips on how to schedule your appointment effectively.
When Should I See a Dentist?
Most professionals recommend you should see a dentist for routine checkups twice a year or every six months. Prevention will help you avoid the following dental issues that indicate you should promptly schedule a visit with your dentist.
Toothache or swelling
Unfortunately, tooth pain does not happen unintentionally and always indicates an underlying oral problem. Even if medication helps to relieve the ailment temporarily, chances are your symptom will only escalate, and waiting it out may only further damage your dental health. In other words, the pain gets worse if the tooth is left untreated.
If you notice swelling around the area or your cheeks, it may indicate an infection of the tooth and its root, which requires professional treatment. Your dentist may suggest an antibiotic to cure the condition or most likely proceed with a comprehensive approach to treat the infected area and its dying root.
Swollen, sensitive, or inflamed gums
Any changes to the soft tissues, including your gums, may indicate severe gum disease, such as periodontitis. The signs suggesting the development of the illness include redness, soreness, swelling, and receding gums. While most mild forms of gum disease can be cured and reversed with extra oral care at home or a dental office, serious cases require your dentist’s full participation.
Any oral injury
Any injury or trauma to your mouth requires urgent dental inspection, even if the occurrence does not seem like an emergency. Injury may cause invisible damage to the hard or soft tissues in your oral cavity, so your dentist will want to monitor the area to check for any worrisome signs.
Canker sores that do not heal
While most of us think of tiny ulcers inside our mouths as non-urgent matters that naturally resolve within a week or two, canker sores can become an issue if they do not adequately heal. If you irritate or accidentally bite your lip or cheek, you might develop a sore that is not healing as it should. This could happen for various reasons, including stress, hormonal fluctuations, weakened immune system, or food allergies. To avoid complications, your dentist will professionally help you overcome the uncomfortable incident.
Many underlying medical conditions, such as diabetes, and various medications, can be a leading cause of dry mouth syndrome. While dry mouth is not considered an emergency, it is often an intolerable and unpleasant side effect that will require dental intervention. Your dentist might also provide you with expert tips on keeping your mouth moist to avoid and mitigate the uncomfortable feeling.
White spots in your mouth
If you notice any white spots on your teeth, it might be an early sign of tooth decay. And as we all know, there is no home remedy designed for treating cavities.
White spots on your gums indicate infection, and those often materialize before the pain comes. You may also experience a gum boil, a type of pimple or abscess on your gums, that most likely indicates an infection or tooth decay requiring root canal treatment.
Sensitivity to hot and cold may be your natural predisposition, manageable with a toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth. However, extreme sensitivity that comes suddenly may interfere with daily functioning and indicate a more profound issue. If you are experiencing atypical teeth thermal sensitivity, schedule your appointment with a dentist to find the true cause of your problem.
Headaches or soreness
Teeth grinding may lead to headaches and soreness in your mouth. By itself, grinding is an issue that should be promptly addressed by your dentist, as it may indicate a TMJ disorder.
How to Schedule an Appointment With a Dentist?
Scheduling an appointment with your dentist has never been easier, considering the convenience of online booking and electronic appointment scheduling systems. If you decide to make an appointment via the phone and speaking to a real-life receptionist, make sure you are prepared before calling.
Gather all your necessary information, including your dental insurance, a calendar, and any questions you want to ask. The person on the other end will most likely inquire about insurance information and may want to enter it into their system. They might perform a pre-verification to make sure you are covered, especially if you are coming in for a particular treatment.
When scheduling your appointment, have a few dates with time slots available, taking into account that the day you desire might be fully booked. It is always a good idea to reserve more time for your visit, considering any delays when you arrive and other unexpected occurrences that may prolong your appointment. That way, you can sit comfortably on the dental chair and drive back safe without falling behind on your schedule.
Consider the time of the appointment. Early morning visits tend to go more smoothly and faster as you are one of the first patients. They minimize the risk of delays, allowing you to take your sweet time and address all your concerns with the practitioner.
Before you make that call:
- Make a list of all the questions you want to ask the receptionist.
- Inquire about the parking situation, which will give you an idea of whether you should leave earlier to make it on time for your appointment.
- Ask if you need to bring your dental records from a previous practice or if they can obtain them electronically for your convenience.
- You may also want to know approximately how long the visit will take so you can plan your day accordingly.
- If you are coming in for a major procedure, such as restorations, ask the receptionist if you should organize transportation, child care, or any other arrangements that require your time off.
There are many reasons why you might want to see a dentist sooner rather than later, especially if you have been an inactive patient for longer than recommended. Keep in mind that prevention is key to success in any field, including dental care. If you are still questioning whether it is time to see a dentist, call Smile in Michigan so we can help you make the right decision.
Feel free to check out the article on How to Choose the Best Dentist?