A dental treatment is a long but necessary commitment for kids and adults alike, but a set of healthy teeth is always worth it. It may be intimidating at first, but the right orthodontist will guide you painlessly through it all. Here is a step by step guide on how to start your search for the perfect orthodontist for your particular needs and what to expect during the first few weeks on your journey to a beautiful smile.
Orthodontic specialist or general dentist?
The first step to narrow your search is to identify the general extent of treatment you need based on the current condition of your teeth and the results you are looking to achieve. Know that you should always have your orthodontic work done by an orthodontist, as a general dentist is not fully qualified to do so.
Most treatments will require the help of an orthodontic specialist as they focus on braces or the Invisalign treatment on a day to day basis. An orthodontist is first a general dentist who then studies orthodontics for an additional two to three years. To confirm your orthodontics’ credentials, look for the Australian Society of Orthodontics logo or simply ask the receptionist or doctor.
Start your search
Now that you know you are looking for an orthodontic specialist, there are a few ways to begin your search. Most often your family doctor, being a professional in the industry that knows your medical background, will recommend an orthodontist he trusts for you.
You can also do more research online to get a general sense of their qualifications, work history, location, or if they are using the latest in the braces technology. It is also important to ask your friends and family for references to know about their particular experience and if they would recommend it for you or a family member.
Now that you have narrowed your search to one to three orthodontists in the Geelong area for example, it is time to book an initial consultation. This will give you a chance to meet with your potential orthodontist, his staff, and to visit the facilities.
The first consultation should take around an half an hour. The orthodontist will assess your smile, bite, and tooth health. He will then proceed to taking x-ray photographs of your teeth and discuss your medical history. Together, you can discuss the treatment options, potential costs, and what he recommends moving forward.
Get to know your orthodontist
Here at Fresh Smiles Orthodontics, we encourage an open relationship with our specialists. Feel free to ask any questions about the treatment and to voice any concerns. Building a good rapport with your orthodontist is important, it will ensure that you are comfortable and fully informed about your treatment options.
Get to know more about their medical background, the payments options they offer, if emergency appointments are available, or how long the treatment should take for example.