Before your first visit to Smile Again Dental we will need information including medical history. To expedite the process of your first visit, you may fill out the New Patient Form and Medical History Form ahead of time and bring them with you to the office.
The first priority at your first appointment is for your dentist to establish a relationship with you and better understand your oral health. Your first visit will consist of a comprehensive examination, and x-rays. We may not do a dental cleaning at your first appointment. The reason behind this is that we want you to have ample face time with your new dentist. This will give them the opportunity to review your health history, as this can dramatically affect how dental treatment is provided. Dr. Aswad will determine what type of cleaning you will benefit from at this initial visit (prophy, deep cleaning). Finally, this initial visit allows for us to ensure your mouth is healthy and determine if there is an existing dental disease, allowing us to tailor a comprehensive approach to your oral healthcare.
It seems like every time you visit a healthcare provider, you’re being asked to fill out forms. One of those forms that you see over and over is your health history. You might feel like this isn’t something you should have to keep updating, especially at the dentist, but it is more important than you think.
Providing your health history at your first visit with Smile Again Dental and updating it regularly allows us to be up-to-date with other health conditions you have and medications you take. Many people mistakenly believe that oral health and overall health are entirely separate things. The fact is, oral and overall health are closely connected.
Patients with health conditions like diabetes, stroke, heart disease, hypertension, or cancer tend to have more trouble with their teeth. When you update your health history and we see that you’ve been diagnosed with one of these conditions since your last visit, we can make sure to look for signs that these conditions are impacting your oral health. It also allows us to see you more frequently, if necessary, to help keep your oral health the best it can be.
Some medications can cause dry mouth, which increases your chances of tooth decay and cavities. Other medications may thin your blood, causing you to bleed longer, which can affect your cleanings and fillings. By being aware of the medications you take, we can be aware of how they might impact the care we provide. This means we might need to change our approach to ensure you get the best dental care possible without causing or worsening the potential negative oral health side effects.
Your health history provides more than just your health conditions and surgeries. It also tells us about your allergies and the medications you are or have previously taken. This can be critical if we need to prescribe something. We need to know about allergies so we don’t prescribe something you’re allergic to. But we also need to know about other medications you take so we don’t prescribe something that will interact with one or more of your current medications.
We ask that you update your health history annually. A year is long enough that many things could have changed, yet not so short a period that we’re bombarding you with the same form repeatedly. Of course, if something changes and you wish to update us sooner, you can absolutely fill out a new form sooner. Once a year is our minimum to ensure that the information we have isn’t too far out of date and that we can stay on top of any changes that might affect your oral health.
You can simply fill out a new medical history form at your next appointment and return it to the front desk. If you’d like to fill it out before your appointment, you can go the Forms page of our website and click on the Health History Form. You can print the medical history form, and complete it at home to return at your next visit. Smile Again Dental and doctor and staff care about you as a whole person, not just a dental patient. By providing us with an updated health history once a year, you allow us to ensure that you’re getting the best possible care, both orally and overall.