Your First Visit
Making an appointment
We are excited to meet you at your first visit to our office. Dr. Schafer and his staff are here to ensure that we can deliver the best possible dental care for you. Until the threat of Covid-19 passes, our office currently only sees patients by appointment only. To keep with social distancing recommended by the Centers for Disease control, we are not seeing patients for walk ins. When you schedule your first visit, we will ask if you are in need of a consult with Dr. Schafer or if you need a cleaning by our hygienist Ms. Tracey.
Before your appointment
In order to make sure that we can see you quickly, we will send you a text message for a secure link to fill out your health history and patient registration information. If you are not able to fill out these forms online, please call us and arrive 30 minutes early to your first appointment. We will have the forms ready for you to fill out in your vehicle before you come into the building.
When you arrive
Immediately upon arrival, we will escort you back to your individual room. As each of our rooms are isolated from each other, we reserve enough time so that each room is contained and thoroughly disinfected between patients. We only allow one guest with each patient and the guest will be required to stay in the room with you for the entire appointment. Also you will be asked for photo ID for our records as well as for any dental benefits you wish to use.
First appointment is a cleaning
If you are getting a cleaning at your first visit, Dr. Schafer will likely recommend a full mouth x-ray series so that Dr. Schafer can do a thorough exam and check every tooth and area in your mouth. This is also useful so that Ms. Tracey our hygienist can make sure that all the surfaces even those below the gum line are clean. A full mouth series of x-rays is recommended by Dr. Schafer once every 3 to 5 years for his patients. Routine full mouth x-rays also help Dr. Schafer monitor any fillings, crowns, root canals, or implants that you have had placed in your mouth so that any problems can be detected and corrected to minimize pain and infection. After the full mouth series for most patients we will start the cleaning the same day and the appointment will end with Dr. Schafer and you discussing any other concerns that you might have as well as any issues that Dr. Schafer sees.
First appointment is a consultation
If your first appointment is a consultation with Dr. Schafer, Dr. Schafer will meet with you and for most patients he will recommend that we take a panoramic x-ray. Dr. Schafer prefers this x-rays for consults as he can see more information quicker than a full mouth x-ray series. It is also useful to exam the jaw bone as well as the jaw joints to make sure that all structures look healthy. Occasionally during the consult, Dr. Schafer will need to take smaller x-rays to check individual teeth for cavities and gum disease. From these x-rays plus an exam Dr. Schafer will talk with you about what concerns you about your teeth and your smile and will help put together a plan to get your mouth in good health. Dr. Schafer will spend about half of the consult or longer talking about what you want to do as usually there are at least two or three options to fix a person’s teeth. After Dr. Schafer and you discuss different treatment option, our treatment coordinator Ms. Jes will work with you to find the one that fits your budget and your time line. We work hard to make our options affordable no matter your budget.
How to get started
To get started with the first appointment, give us a phone call at 504-392-5104 and we will get you scheduled for an appointment. We look forward to meeting you.