Your first visit with our office will vary depending upon your needs. If you are experiencing pain, we will focus all of our efforts on diagnosing the cause of the pain and providing you relief from your suffering. If you are looking to start a relationship with a new dental team, our comprehensive examination is second to none. In case of emergency, most times, treatment can be accomplished in our office. Sometimes the situation will dictate that we refer you to a specialist, the quality of your care being the main deciding factor.
Although we gladly offer assistance to patients experiencing dental pain, there can often be a pattern or habit to the pain. We will not lecture you on the benefits of preventive care while you are in emergency pain, but understand that the Preventive Care Model can help to eliminate most causes of emergency dental pain.
Because of the positive impact we can have on our patients’ lives, our goal is to complete a comprehensive exam for every patient or member of our dental family. Your first visit involves a personal interview with either Dr. Carpenter or one of our integrative hygienists (if you choose to start your dental health journey with a cleaning or hygiene visit.) We will gather diagnostic information, and based on your dental history and goals, will take only needed digital radiographs (based mainly on your history of dental care and current level of health or disease.) This could involve digital panoramic X-ray and a few images of the teeth to rule out decay or could be a digital panoramic X-ray and full series of digital images for evaluating the health of each tooth, whichever is necessary based on your history and goals. All patients are offered homeopathic nosodes for minimizing the negative impact of digital X-ray exposure. The digital panoramic image is used to observe the health of the jaw joints, to help rule out cancer and to evaluate the jaw bone for infection related to root canals, or infections left behind after failed extractions… also known as cavitation osteonecrosis or “cavitation lesions.” Sometimes we will request mounted study models of your teeth to allow us to study your bite and plan your necessary treatment when you are not at our practice. Most times, Dr. Carpenter will be able to offer you a treatment plan the same day that addresses your oral and systemic health goals.
The most important service any dentist or physician can offer is a thorough examination and diagnosis of existing conditions, a detailed review of these findings and a plan for prevention and treatment that serves the patients’ short-range and long-term goals. I believe that the journey to greater comfort, beauty, and confidence with our teeth begins with a clear understanding of where we are and where we want to go. Understanding the existing conditions provides you with the knowledge necessary to make the proper choices that suit your personal health values. Without a target or goal, the process of dental care can be discouraging, painful, unnecessarily expensive, and crippling.
Dentistry, unlike many other aspects of life, is usually carried out without a master plan: without concrete goals and objectives of what you would like your mouth to be like in the future. For this reason, we take a great deal of time and effort throughout your examination to help you understand your mouth as much as possible, including the causes of disease and breakdown. We then help you decide how you would like to be treated. This may be different from your previous dental experiences if you were told what you should do without a clear understanding of the underlying causes of the problem, then asked to make an uninformed decision about the repairs. Many patients would have chosen a different course of treatment for themselves if they had only understood the rules of cause and effect in dentistry. Many patients end up needing expensive dental repair as a result of a lack of dental knowledge. Modern dentistry has reached a high level of comfort and capability, and our ability to serve patients has never been more exceptional.
Please assist us by providing the following information at the time of your consultation: