Overcoming Dental Anxiety: Understanding How Our Team Makes You Smile
One-third of the U.S. population avoids the dentist due to fear and anxiety. However, we’ve learned that dental phobia is significantly reduced when patients have a greater understanding and appreciation of the roles their dental team plays in their treatment. You should know that each member of our team has the shared goal of making your experience comfortable, safe, and enjoyable.
During your appointment, you'll meet friendly faces in one of four unique roles: admin, dental assistant, dental hygienist, and general dentist. Each team member helps create a welcoming environment where you can feel at home. Here's a breakdown of each role so you and your family can feel at ease.
Meet Your Administrative Support Team
Our administrative team is the first friendly face you'll meet when entering our dental practice. A member of this team will welcome you and help you check-in for your appointment.
To ensure your appointment goes smoothly from the beginning, the admin team will:
Maintain a clean, comfortable, and inviting office
Verify your dental records and paperwork are completed and current
Process your payments and schedule new appointments
Help you understand treatment plans and make arrangements to receive treatment
One of the best things about the administrative support team is the care they provide before your appointment. If feeling nervous or afraid has caused you to delay a dental visit, you can let your administrative team know during your initial phone call so we can use extra care in making you feel comfortable. They take pride in their ability to warmly welcome you to our dental home so you feel like family too.
Meet Your Dental Assistant
The dental assistant is usually the next team member you'll meet at our practice. This person has both administrative and clinical responsibilities, so you may see them in the front office during check-in or in the back, assisting with treatments.
Once it's time for your appointment, this team member will show you to the exam room. After you've settled in, the dental assistant will verify your medical history, confirm your planned treatment, and assess your current pain or discomfort. While in the exam room, you'll also notice this friendly face doing the following:
Sterilizing dental equipment and instruments
Assisting with restorative and cosmetic procedures, including fillings, dental implants, crowns, and veneers
Sitting chairside to support your general dentist
The dental assistant's primary goal is to ensure a comfortable and successful appointment for both you and the dentist. If you’re ever anxious or overwhelmed during treatment, or have questions about the service being provided, your dental assistant is great at communicating those next steps. This team member is focused on providing an excellent patient experience and achieves that by guaranteeing any administrative and clinical needs are met.
Meet Your Dental Hygienist
The Hygienist will examine your teeth with a focus on preventing and minimizing gum disease. Their license allows them to work with patients one-on-one to deliver education and treatment focused on maintaining excellent oral health. Your hygienist is highly skilled in providing complete preventative and therapeutic gum care, offering guidance for how you can better care for your unique oral health needs, and recommending products to help you have a healthier smile.
In the treatment room, you'll notice your dental hygienist handling various responsibilities to ensure your appointment goes smoothly. Some of those tasks include:
Taking dental x-rays
Cleaning your teeth and removing stains, plaque, and tartar
Examining your teeth and reporting their findings to the dentist
Providing you with education on how to maintain good oral health at home
Dental hygienists must attend continuing education (CE) courses every year, just like your dentist. This requirement ensures dental hygienists stay up-to-date on industry best practices, learn new techniques, and continually expand their knowledge. That way, they continue to provide the best patient experience possible.
Meet Your General Dentist
The last person you'll meet at our practice is usually your general dentist. The dentist’s goal is to diagnose and treat issues regarding your gums and teeth. They're responsible for handing more complex treatments and tasks, such as:
Restorative treatment, like placing dental implants, crowns, and bridges
Recommending dental specialists for procedures such as wisdom teeth extractions, periodontal disease treatment, or orthodontic treatment
Because a general dentist is significantly involved in your treatment and oral health, they focus on providing a comfortable environment by being friendly and knowledgeable, so you feel educated and confident moving forward with the treatment you need.
Ready to Meet Your Team in Person?
Every member of our team wants to make your experience the best possible. From the time you enter our dental home, to the time your visit ends, you'll encounter friendly faces who will guide, educate, and offer exceptional patient care in a welcoming environment you can trust. If you or someone you know has delayed their next dental appointment due to fear, anxiety, or uncertainty, give us a call today.