New Patient Exam
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Your First Visit – a Painless Conversation
What makes our Dental Practice unique is we start by listening. Many of us have had the frustrating experience of having to first tell our problem to the Front Office Staff, then the assistant, then Hygienist and finally having a minute or two to re-tell it to the doctor. We begin with the doctor listening to you, thus avoiding the frustration that builds up when you have to tell your issues to front desk, assistant,Hygienist and finally having a minute or two to tell the same to the doctor.
Dr. Krishnamurthy begins by listening to your concerns, reviewing your individual history and explaining the examination process and diseases that may be affecting you. Only when your past experiences and dental and medical history is thoroughly discussed is the examination started. Your examination involves you and is not merely the collection of data for the doctor to ponder over. We explain what we see and what is healthy and unhealthy. We call this unique way of examination a “guided tour” of your mouth. Typically on the first visit you have the doctor’s undivided attention prior to any treatment being initiated.
The results of the exam are presented to you in an easy to understand written format. Depending on your needs, a Review of Findings appointment may be set up (at no extra charge) solely to have the opportunity to explain your condition and treatment needs and options. Dr. Krishnamurthy will prepare a detailed and reader friendly Master Plan for your individual optimal health. You may accept or decline any treatment recommended. Only when you are comfortable about the doctor’s recommendations and have all your questions answered do we move forward with treatment. We believe it is our privilege to help you understand your dental health, how it affects your overall health and to treat your needs.
We have found that no two patients are alike – everyone has different goals and desires. Some people just want to chew comfortably again while others want to look younger and have a more attractive smile. Some people dread going to the dentist while others actually like it! Our goal is to make sure you get what you want. That is why your first visit is usually just a conversation with Dr. Krishnamurthy.
We need to know where you’ve been, where you are now, where you want to go, and when you want to get there. You need to know if we are the right place for you. If everyone is happy (which is usually the case) – then we move forward to see where you are now.
The goal of the New Patient Exam is to discover together the current state of your dental health. This is not about scolding or lecturing – it is about finding our starting point.
Dr. Krishnamurthy takes a comprehensive approach to dental care, which means she not only diagnosis and treats conditions affecting the teeth, gums, and jaw, but also emphasizes quality preventive care to reduce the risk of those conditions recurring. She aims to intercept problems while they’re still small so she can utilize the most conservative treatment plans possible.
Comprehensive Dentistry is truly an approach to dental diagnosis and treatment that addresses the entire mouth as a system rather than individual teeth. Thorough examination, diagnosis, and interdisciplinary treatment planning, which involves your general dentist and possibly other dental specialists, are central to this approach to treatment.
Comprehensive Dentistry looks at the whole person, not just a tooth in trouble.
First, an interview with the patient is conducted. The objective of this interview is to listen to your concerns, dental and health history and goals. Then a thorough medical history is taken, paying attention to medications, supplements, allergies and existing conditions.
Radiographs are taken with the newer digital x-rays, which have the lowest radiation and instant viewing for the patient. A panoramic x-ray is valuable in looking at structures other than the teeth, including the jaws, sinuses and jaw joints. As part of the soft tissue exam, Dr. Krishnamurthy will perform an oral cancer screening. Each tooth and restoration is thoroughly examined.
The Soprolife Cavity Detection Camera will be used in the exam to pick up decay before it is noticeable. This will be followed by a periodontal exam investigating the gums, pocketing, recession, bleeding, bone loss and mobility.
An occlusal exam is done to analyze the ‘bite’, the muscles, ligaments, temporomandibular joints and how they all fit and work together. Then a ‘smile analysis’ in which the doctor will take the teeth, lips, and face into account for study. Photographs, molds, and casts are made, and an assessment of the patient’s hygiene is done.
With comprehensive exams, patients typically come back at a later date to receive their diagnosis and treatment options, with the pros and cons of the various possibilities. Each patient chooses the treatment plan that fits their needs. Together doctor and patient strategize the plan for treatment and schedule. Often treatment is phased to arrive at an optimal goal in the future.
All reconstructive work needs to be built upon a foundation of a healthy periodontium and a stable bite. When you choose Comprehensive Dentistry, the comprehensive exam coupled with the patient’s own willingness to assume responsibility, ensures a mouthful of natural teeth for a lifetime.
It is based on the theory that most people would like to keep their natural teeth for a lifetime, and with a little help, you can.
Comprehensive Dentistry views the mouth as the gateway to the human body. Liquids and solids enter the body through the mouth and digestion starts here. Proper functioning of the mouth is vitally important.
Several types of cardiovascular diseases may be linked to oral health; heart disease, clogged arteries, stroke and bacterial endocarditis. Research is ongoing to substantiate this discovery
Your new patient appointment will hence include a comprehensive exam to evaluate the health of your teeth, gums, jaw muscles, and joints. In addition, we will take X-rays, diagnostic photographs, and we may create diagnostic models. With current, accurate records Dr. Krishnamurthy can design a customized treatment plan for you based specifically on your goals and objectives. Based upon your goals and level of dental fitness, Dr. Krishnamurthy will present to you YOUR Plan. You will get a clear review of everything that was discussed and the results of each examination that was performed. You will know the present state of your dental health and you will be able to confirm this in your photographs. You will have a step by step solution to get you to your goals and you will know the costs – all in advance.
After over 13 years of practicing dentistry – the dentistry is not the challenge – it’s making sure we are on the same page and we get you what you want! And we will!