At Howard County Smiles in Columbia, MD, our goal is to give each patient the best experience possible. We do this by providing exceptional service and gentle dental care.
We are currently accepting new patients to our family-friendly dentist office. Join our growing dental family in Howard County and enjoy our state-of-the-art dentist office equipped to meet all of your dental health and cosmetic needs under one roof.
Dr. Ray Becker is nationally recognized for his experience as a restorative dentist treating complex bite problems. He can help you achieve a smile that is healthy, comfortable, and beautiful.
What to Expect
A beautiful smile begins with a healthy smile. That’s why we take a proactive approach to preventative dental care. Your first visit will begin with a new patient exam and consultation.
You’ll have a chance to talk about your dental and medical history as well as your dental concerns and goals. If you need cosmetic or restorative dental treatment, we’ll design a treatment plan that fits your needs and budget.
Our dental examinations typically include:
- Periodontal screening for gum disease
- Oral cancer screening
- TMJ and bite analysis using joint vibration analysis or JVA testing
- Digital dental x-rays
- Professional dental cleaning
Depending on the results of our exams and screenings, we may perform a cleaning. However, if we find signs of periodontal disease, we will not perform a cleaning. Instead, we will discuss the next steps of your treatment. You may require a more extensive cleaning at your next visit to properly address your gum disease symptoms.
What To Expect: New TMD Patients
If you have a TMJ disorder and are a new patient to our practice, your first dental visit will be slightly different than a typical first visit.
You will be in our office for 90 minutes to 2 hours for a specialized TMD consultation. During this consultation, we will take an extensive history and perform diagnostic tests. We will perform a Joint Vibration Analysis, measuring movement in the jaw, and identifying vibrations that can occur in the TMJ. A TekScan can also measure the bite, showing where and how your teeth come together. We can determine the best treatment method for your TMD using software and technology.
Please arrive 15 minutes before your appointment to allow us time to obtain additional details.
New Dental Patient FAQs
What should I bring to my first dental appointment?
Please make sure that you bring your insurance card and updated medication list, as well as your photo ID.
Does Howard County Smiles accept dental insurance?
Howard County Smiles accepts assignment of benefits from most dental insurance companies. Currently, we are In-Network with select plans. We will always assist you in any way we can to get the most of your insurance benefits for you and your family.
I do not have dental insurance; what are my payment options?
We offer many payment options, including Cash, Checks, and all major credit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover. For our patients without dental insurance, we offer a 5% discount for amounts over $500.00 that are made in full when paid by cash or check.
We also offer our own Dental Savings Membership. See the brochure for details or ask any of our staff. Click HERE to download our savings membership brochure!
How long will my first appointment last?
Please allow up to 90 minutes for your first appointment, as we want to be as thorough as possible to match our high standard of care. We take a comprehensive approach to dental care to ensure that we meet the needs of our patients.
Do you see children?
Yes, Dr. Becker is a family dentist, and we welcome children to our Columbia dentist office. We work as a team to help children feel comfortable and relaxed during their dental appointments. The American Dental Association recommends that children see a dentist by the time their first tooth erupts.
Bringing children to the dentist at a young age helps them feel more comfortable and relaxed. It also gives us the opportunity to teach your children how to properly care for their teeth and develop life-long oral hygiene habits. We generally begin providing routine care for children (every six months) at age 3.