Healthy smiles begin with good oral hygiene and regular dental appointments. At Frank Dunlap, DDS, we understand that a first visit, whether you are a child or adult, should be a positive and even enjoyable experience. In many cases, your first visit can set the tone for future appointments. From your first visit to the last, we strive to ensure you receive the best possible care!
The Importance of Routine Appointments
Unfortunately, daily brushing and flossing isn't enough to prevent certain dental problems. Routine appointments with us can help you avoid the two most common oral health issues: tooth decay and gum disease. Both of these problems are caused by the bacteria in your mouth, which we keep at bay during each visit.
The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends scheduling a dental appointment about every six months. However, some people have fears or anxiety that prevents them from scheduling routine visits. Our comfortable atmosphere and painless treatment techniques can help reduce your anxiety, allowing you to receive the care you need.
Your Initial Exam
For both children and adults, the first visit always includes a comprehensive examination. During your exam, Dr. Frank Dunlap will check your teeth, gums, soft tissues, and maxillofacial structures for potential problems. More often than not, this first exam is largely precautionary and helps us establish a baseline for your oral health.
The first exam will also be educational, especially for children. We typically review the proper brushing and flossing techniques to ensure our patients implement excellent oral hygiene practices. We may also discuss diet and nutrition. You should be limiting your consumption of foods and beverages high in sugar and other simple carbohydrates to reduce your risk of tooth decay, gum disease, and other dental issues.
Like other routine appointments, your first visit may also include a professional cleaning. During your cleaning, our dental hygienist will use a special hand tool, known as an ultrasonic scaler, to remove deposits of plaque and tartar (calcified plaque). Tartar, which occurs after significant plaque buildup, is extremely hard to remove. In many cases, tartar can only be eliminated during a professional cleaning.
Once your cleaning is complete, we will polish your teeth. Professional cleanings not only improve your oral health, but they also help you achieve a brighter, more beautiful smile! Cleanings for children may also be followed by fluoride treatment, which strengthens the enamel and even reverses minor instances of decay.
If we diagnose any dental problems during your initial exam, we will recommend additional treatments. Depending on the severity of your issue, you may need to schedule a follow-up appointment. Dr. Frank Dunlap will develop an individualized treatment plan that addresses your oral health issues in a safe, comfortable, and effective manner.
Be sure to ask questions and voice concerns during your appointment. Patient education is the cornerstone of excellent oral health and can help you prevent any issues from developing into major complications. In the meantime, restorative treatments like dental fillings and crowns can get your smile back on track.
Schedule Your First Appointment
Professional dentistry is the best way for you and your loved ones to maintain healthy, beautiful smiles. If you would like to visit our Houston dental office, call (346) 576-4411 and schedule your first appointment today!