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Been a While Since You’ve Seen Your Dentist? Here’s What You Can Expect

March 4, 2021

Filed under: Uncategorized — thirdstreet @ 5:26 am
Patient at dentist

Did you know that the American Dental Association (ADA) reports that about 42% of Americans do not see their dentist as often as they should? For many people this is a result of fear of costs, dental anxiety, or just forgetfulness. The good news is that it is never too late to begin working towards a healthier smile, and that means going to the dental office every six months for regular cleanings and checkups. If it has been a while for you, you may not remember exactly what the process is like. Here is what you can expect during your first dental checkup with your dentist in Columbus after a hiatus.

How Long Will Your First Appointment Last?

Since it has been a while since your last visit, you want to give yourself a little bit more time than usual. You will need to fill out some paperwork regarding your contact information, health history, and dental insurance information if you have it. You should reserve about an hour of your day for your visit so that the team has plenty of time to get everything done.

What Does a Normal Dental Visit Look Like?

There are several different steps during a normal dental checkup. Here are the ones you can expect:


Your dentist will have you complete an x-ray on a regular basis. This is helpful when it comes to revealing issues that cannot be easily detected with the naked eye. This includes problems related to the jawbone, impacted teeth, tooth decay, and other problems. A lead apron will be placed over your chest and an x-ray sensor is put into your mouth. You will be instructed to bite down, and then you’ll be all set!

Professional Cleaning

One of the biggest parts of your visit involves your dental hygienist cleaning your teeth. Even if you are a diligent brusher and flosser, there will still be areas in your mouth that you cannot reach. They will check your gumline, remove plaque and tartar with dental instruments, floss your teeth, and polish them to remove stubborn surface stains.


Next, your dentist will step in and take a look at your teeth. They will check for signs of gum disease, tooth decay, and oral cancer. If there is something that has been bothering you in your mouth, this is a great time to bring it up. Your dentist will let you know about any findings or abnormalities so you can stay in the loop. If there are any issues, they will inform you about the next steps that will be taken.


Your dental visit is also a time for you to learn more about your teeth. It’s your smile after all! The dental team is happy to answer any questions you may have about oral health, treatments available, or your appointment.

Don’t forget to schedule your next visit before leaving the office. Your smile will be thanking you!

About the Author

Dr. Eric Buck earned his Doctor of Dental Surgery from The Ohio State University College of Dentistry. He is currently an active member of numerous professional organizations including the American Dental Association, Ohio Dental Association, and Columbus Dental Society. If it has been a while since your last dental checkup, he’d be happy to help you get back on track. For more information or to schedule an appointment at his office in Columbus, visit his website or call (614) 228-4850.

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