If your crooked teeth embarrass you and you either resist smiling or cover your mouth with your hand, then it may be time to see an orthodontist. Whether it is for you or your child in order to find the right one, there are a number of steps you need to take. Getting braces is a big commitment that you will make to one orthodontist. It will last for several years. Therefore, you should not be afraid to search around for the best fit. This is true even if you have already had a consult with another doctor at an earlier age. This because the right orthodontist can make the entire process much easier.
First and foremost, it is best to ask your regular dentist as well as friends and family whom they recommend. Be sure to go online and check to see if they are board certified in orthodontics. You should also look for additional reviews, as well. You also need to contact your dental insurance company to find out what your policy covers and if any of the doctors you chose are on the plan. Once you have found three or four that you think you can work with, set up a consultation.
When you go for the first appointment, be sure to ask how many doctors are in the practice. Also, enquire into when treatment should begin and how long it will last. You should also find out exactly what the process entails and how much it will cost. Additionally, you need to find out if you have any options as you may be able to choose Invisalign over braces. You also need to find out if there are any consequences if you delay treatment, what the office hours are, and how long the doctor has been in practice. Moreover, be sure to find out how accessible the doctor is and how emergencies are handled.
Pay attention to how you are treated by the entire office staff from the moment you walk in until you walk out the door. From the receptionist to the hygienist, they should all be friendly and accommodating. Scheduling should be flexible and easy and no one should seem impatient when dealing with you or the other patients that are in the office. Whether a practice is right for you has a lot to do with the personality of the orthodontist, its staff, and how good you feel while you are there.
If all of this works out, then you also need to discuss how much the procedure will cost and what your payment options are as many have plans that you can take advantage of because much of it probably will not be covered by insurance because it may be considered a cosmetic procedure.
This visit should last around an hour. The doctor and staff will do x-rays, take pictures, and take an extensive medical history. In addition, he or she will measure how wide you can open your mouth and whether you have jaw muscle tenderness or clicking. The orthodontist will also measure the protrusion which is how much your teeth are jutting out and look at the crowding of your teeth.