What To Expect When You Haven't Seen A Dentist In Years

If you haven't been to see a dentist in a long time, you may be worried about going back. It could be because you're worried there might be extensive damage, or because you'll be subjected to a lecture about dental hygiene and regular dental visits. But going back to see your dentist doesn't have to be scary. As a patient, you have a lot of control over what happens and at what pace you move. So before you put off your next visit any longer, familiarize yourself with what you should expect the next time you see your dentist.


Some dentists keep paperwork about your medical history on file, but only for so long. If it's been at least a decade, there's a possibility you will need to fill out more paperwork. This usually consists of your medical history, allergies, current medications, emergency contacts and insurance. You can usually fill this out before your appointment and won't have to make a special trip; just arrive at the office a little early so you can fill it out completely.

Examination and Catch Up

After many years, if your information is still on file, much of it will be out of date. You will need to get X-rays taken and then sit down to talk with your dentist about your current situation. This is the time to talk about any pain you have been experiencing, any stains, cracks or chips you've noticed on your teeth, or any other issues that come to mind. After that, the dentist will probably examine your teeth and poke and prod a little. This part doesn't hurt, and isn't followed by any procedures or even cleaning unless you specify that's what you want.

No Lectures or Pressure

Dentists are used to people being afraid to come in or additional circumstances that prevent patients from coming in, like losing insurance or a job. As a result, you won't be scolded for your lack of visits. This also means that you won't be pressured to do things you don't want or move faster than you want. Make appointments based on your schedule and don't feel pressured to get everything taken care of at once. Most importantly, be sure to communicate with your dentist. Tell him what you are and are not comfortable with; if you have any worries or concerns, don't be afraid to speak up and ask for accommodations. Don't worry about annoying your dentist by asking; he is more than willing and used to addressing concerns and help.

Dental Issues

Even if you've been taking great care of your teeth while you've been away from the dentist, it's reasonable to expect some problems. You may have a few cavities or a chipped tooth or two. Don't let this dissuade you or worry you. The important thing is that you're going to get it taken care of, and as long as you talk to your dentist, you can do it at a pace where you feel comfortable. Visit a local dental office like Neu Family Dental Center today.