How Long Does A Dentist Appointment Take?

We should all be aware of how important it is to get regular dental check-ups.

Much like a doctor’s appointment, we should always make it part of our routine to ensure we’re being kept an eye on physically.

How Long Does A Dentist Appointment Take

The problem is, today’s world is moving so quickly and we have so much to do – we often overlook going to the dentist and if we do – we want the appointment to be as quick as possible.

What we must recognise though is that regardless of how long a dentist appointment takes, it will always save us more time in the future if we need a serious procedure.

This guide explores how long a dentist appointment may take and the importance of going to it.

How Long Might A Dental Appointment Take?

In reality, the duration of time you will be in a dentist will depend on what the appointment is for. However, we can give estimates.

According to the American Dental Association, the average time a person will spend at a dentist appointment is about 52 minutes – but it is very important that we clarify this.

If you were to attend a check-up or a general cleaning, the time you are at the appointment would significantly drop – by around 10 or 15 minutes.

If you are attending a specialist, depending on the procedure, the time could decrease by 5 to 10 minutes, or it could increase by 10 minutes.

There is also the aspect of the waiting room waiting time which the averages do not account for.

Reports have suggested that you may be in the waiting room for up to 10 minutes at a time.

So, if you were looking for a general rule of thumb – give yourself an hour to spend at the dentist and you should be close to the right number.

Check-Ups And Times

An important aspect to times spent at the dentist is how much time you could save by doing simple things.

As we mentioned previously, attending check-ups regularly is critical.

If your dentist recommends you to do so, you should go for a dental check-up at least twice a year, every six months.

If you do this, your dentist will be able to examine you and see if there is anything that might be causing, or will cause, a problem.

As a result, they will be able to prevent a significant and serious problem from occurring which will reduce your overall dentist duration, the next time you have to attend.

However, there are many other things you should consider about preventing long waits at the dentist in the future.

A Good Dental Hygiene Routine

It is perhaps unsurprising that the more you look after your teeth, the less likely you are to need time consuming dental appointments.

A good dental hygiene routine includes the following things:

Brush Your Teeth

The primary thing to do is to ensure you are brushing your teeth correctly.

It’s recommended you do this twice a day, but sometimes this is not possible – so once a day is the absolute minimum.

Always use a fluoride toothpaste, unless advised otherwise by your dentist or doctor.

Your dentist may even recommend specific toothpaste tailored to your needs – if this is the case, always make sure you follow their recommendations.



Dental floss has been proven by many dental professionals to be extremely effective in good oral hygiene.

It can remove food debris that cannot be removed by brushing alone. Try to floss after every meal, but if this is not possible, floss after every brush.


Many people overlook mouthwash, but it can be very helpful when it comes to promoting great oral health.

Dentists recommend using mouthwash in between meals, rather than just after brushing – so not to remove any helpful ingredients from the toothpaste right away.

Choose The Right Foods

Most of us will be aware that sugary foods are very harmful to our teeth, so knowing about these dangers from certain foods is important.

Whilst there’s nothing wrong with enjoying the occasional treat, ensure you are not making a habit of it and ensure the previous steps are taken to prevent tooth decay.

Additionally, you may be able to find snacks and gums that promote dental health throughout the day.

If you find these, it may be beneficial to take advantage of them.

Regular Dental Check-Ups

And as we have said, along with all of the previous points – it’s critical that you go for your check-ups, preferably every six months.

However, if you have to miss one – once a year is the bare minimum you should aim for.

Waiting Times And The Future

Whilst dentist appointment times remain relatively unchanged on average, the waiting times have increased by an average of 7 minutes over the last 20 years.

However, the days to wait for an appointment have reduced too.

Experts have warned that there will be an increase in the length of time you will wait in the waiting room and possibly even during your appointment.

As a result, it is a good idea to plan ahead.

Consider speaking with your dentist about possible ways to reduce your waiting times in the future, and possibly even consider changing your health insurance.

And of course, most significantly – look after overall health and you should not need to attend long dental appointments in the future.

The Bottom Line

It is almost impossible to give you a specific time for a dentist appointment, but you can estimate within the hour ballpark to be occupied.

If you attend regular check-ups and look after yourself though, you should be able to reduce your time in the future.

Andrew Kemp
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