I Haven’t Visited the Dentist in a While: What Procedure Should I Start With?

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In an ideal world, everyone would visit the dentist for their regular checkups twice a year. But dentists understand sometimes life gets in the way. Things get busy, and you skip an appointment — and then suddenly it’s been a few years since your child’s last dental visit.

If your child hasn’t been to the dentist in a while, you may be wondering what dental procedures to prioritize. We often hear from patients who have gone years between cleanings, and they’re a bit nervous about coming in.

We completely understand your worries. Here’s a guide to what to expect at the first dental appointment in years and how to get your dental care up to speed.

What Procedure Does My Child Need at Their First Dental Visit in a While?

Your child’s first appointment after a long break from the dentist should be an initial exam. This will include:

  • Taking X-rays of their teeth.
  • Checking for cavities.
  • Discussing any discomfort or pain in their mouth.
  • Examining gums for signs of disease.

The assistant and dentist will confer to discuss what further procedures your child may need after this initial checkup. You may need to schedule fillings for cavities, crowns, extractions, or sealants, depending what shape your child’s teeth are in.

Realize There May Be Some Discomfort

When your child has had a long layoff from dental cleanings, they will accumulate a lot of plaque and tartar that will need to be cleaned away. This involves a combination of scraping and using other dental instruments to clean the teeth. In the event that they need a deep cleaning, often referred to as SRP, we will schedule two appointments.

Ask the assistant or dentist to explain everything first, which will help put you or your child at ease. However, also realize there may be some discomfort. You may want to ask about bringing music or a podcast to listen to and keep them distracted while the work is done.

Make Your First Dental Visit in a While at Just Kids Dental

At Just Kids Dental, we know it can be scary to visit the dentist after a long layoff. We’ll work with you and your child to make everyone as comfortable as possible and explain everything we do during your visit. Contact us to make an appointment today.

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