First Visit Frequently Asked Questions
What Will Happen On My First Visit?
The following information will be very useful to you:
After you have scheduled your initial visit, new patient forms will be sent to you to complete at home and bring with you to your appointment. If you have not been able to complete these forms, please arrive a few minutes early to complete any paperwork before seeing the doctor. (Please note that you can fill out your patient registration and medical history form on our website.)
Please remember to bring your referral slip and any x-rays from your referring dentist.
If you normally take an antibiotic pre-medication for cleanings please pre-medicate before your consultation.
At the time of your first appointment, I will listen closely to your concerns and conduct a thorough examination. I will subsequently discuss my recommendations with you as well as keep communication with your dentist. My firm belief is that when patients understand all their options they are better able to make an informed decision about their health.
Please Note: All patients under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian at the consultation appointment.
Please notify the office if you have a medical condition or concern prior to surgery (e.g. artificial heart valves or joints, heart murmurs requiring pre-medication, severe diabetes, or hypertension).
We will complete an in-depth medical and dental health history and a thorough examination to measure for bone loss, loose teeth, bite, oral cancer screening, TMJ, and other signs of periodontal disease.
Will It Hurt?
We will be as gentle as possible. The periodontal exam can be completed with little or no discomfort.
Do I Need X-Rays?
We will need current periodontal x-rays in order to see disease not otherwise visible. If your referring dentist has taken x-rays, you may request that they be forwarded to us.
What Will It Cost?
Since all patients are different, your periodontist must complete your examination before establishing your treatment plan and the fee for care. The fee for periodontal treatment can vary considerably depending on the type of problems and the complexity and length of treatment. An approximate fee can usually be determined at the initial visit; but on occasion, some initial treatment or further diagnostics must be completed before the final treatment plan can be established. Our philosophy of practice is to treat as conservatively as possible to attain treatment goals
Will My Insurance Cover The Cost?
Dental insurance policies often cover periodontal treatment. Please bring all dental benefit information and cards to your examination appointment.
While we are not directly involved with any insurance companies, we will do all we can to help you derive maximum benefits from your insurance plan. We have a staff member whose sole job is to help patients receive as much as possible form their insurance company, but remember, this is done as a courtesy to our patients. Each patient is responsible for his or her treatment fees.
Will I Need Surgery?
Not everyone needs periodontal surgery. If treated early, gum disease can be controlled without surgery. We will make recommendations based on your individual situation. Our philosophy of practice is to provide the treatment that will achieve the best results.
Can My Teeth Be Saved?
The recent advances in periodontal treatment allow us to successfully treat most teeth.
Will I Go Back To My General Dentist?
Our office and your dentist will work closely together. If crowns and fillings are needed your dentist will provide them. Regular visits to your dentist are an important part of periodontal maintenance.
What If I Don’t Have Gum Treatment?
Periodontal disease is a progressive, painless infection. Delay can cause you further bone loss and more expense. If your teeth are lost, dentures are never as effective as your own teeth.